Day 3: We’re so LA now

January 16th, 2014

L.A.

Oh hey people, well we’ve just been so busy and having so much fun that writing the ol blog has kind of taken a back seat in the past couple of days. So here I am, paying penance, staying up late and writing to all of you (mainly because when we got home tonight around 9 or so, I donned my 2 (two) Snuggies and then crashed hard until about midnight, which means I’m on my second wind bayyybeeee!)

Right, so the morning of the 16th started out with a hike up Mt. Hollywood in Griffith Park. Upon leaving the house, we noticed a crazy amount of smoke and cloud in the sky to the south east. We soon found out on the radio that there was a forest fire about 25miles outside of LA in Angeles National Forest. Super sad! In total, 5 houses and a few other structures burned and as of today (Saturday evening) it is still burning, although more controlled. Apparently a state of emergency (drought) has been officially declared in Cali as of today…. 😦

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SO, thinking the end was surely upon us, we proceeded down the way we knew to get up to Griffith Park. Eventually we decided that we would listen to Park Gar Min and lo and behold, she took us right down Western Ave, which is the epicentre of Korea Town in LA. Of course she would! 😉 We were really excited to feel like we were in Korea again, seeing the writing and some shops familiar to us from our time there, such as Face Shop and Tom and Toms Coffee.

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Smog over LA from the forest fire

Our hike was very enjoyable. We started just down the hill from the Griffith Observatory and hiked up to the top of Mt. Hollywood. We originally intended on hiking closer to the Hollywood sign, but couldn’t quite locate the trail and decided the view was just as good on the other trail. It was a scorcher and water was definitely required! The hike is not too long, and affords excellent views of the city, which on the day we hiked were unfortunately rather marred by the forest fire smoke. On our drive back down, we saw (aka almost ran over) two coyotes, whose days may have been numbered, considering around the next corner was a park ranger with one of those loop-stick catchy things.

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View of LA from Mt Hollywood.

For lunch, we dined at Haru Sushi, an awesome, actually Japanese run place on S. San Vincente. I had 2 different rolls and Leah had a bento box, which was a huge amount of food and great deal. Everything was REALLY tasty and our server was so cute, friendly, and polite. Definitely recommend this place to eat at due to the super service and delicious food.

We were headed in the direction of the beach next and decided to take the scenic route there, as in, the fashion route through Rodeo Drive. I was basically in fashion heaven, longingly breathing the names of the greats…Gucci…Prada…Bottega Veneta…Chanel… le sigh!! We also drove past the Regent Beverly Wilshire, as seen in Pretty Woman. Super sigh!

From there, we searched out an amazing Persian ice cream store on Westwood Blvd, called Saffron & Rose Ice Cream. The prices were very reasonable and the man behind the counter was SO friendly and helpful. He was really informative, describing how the ice cream was made (it’s an old family-run business), the different flavours, encouraging us to try different things, etc. Such a great experience. We ended up getting almond and pomegranate flavours (me) and almond and espresso (Leah). Definitely to die for.

We finished up our day at the beach near Santa Monica pier. Driving places takes soooooo long in LA that we didn’t feel like venturing further up the coast to Malibu. Good thing too, because we saw two dolphins! They were just casually swimming near the shore and every so often their fins would pierce the water. So cool. It was great weather and a nice relaxing way to end the day and our time in LA. 

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We headed for home after some iced coffee and spent some time with my family. I will miss them a lot!

Itinerary of the Itinerant wanderers – subject to side routes and meanderings, of course

Here’s the synopsis of our travels so far. Hopefully we’ll pretty much keep on track…but you know what they say about the best laid plans! Please let us know if there is anywhere we MUST eat, anything we MUST see or do, or any other awesome recommendations. We are planning on couchsurfing in: St. Louis, Kansas City, and Las Vegas, if anyone out there has a super comfy couch, or better yet, spare bed for us to crash on. We are super fun and will have heaps of good stories – promise!

Also! If anyone has tips for the best routes to take….we LOVE scenery! Whatever scenery you can get in the dead of winter that is…

December 26th: Depart Moncton, NB. Arr New York City

December 27-29th: Livin it up in NYC

Dec 30th: NYC to Germantown, MD via Philly and Baltimore. Cousins reunion!

Dec 31st: DC New Years! Touring the Pentagon, National Mall, the Whitest of Houses, Smithsonian… HAPPY NEW YEAR!!

January 1st, 2014: Chincoteague, Assateague … Wild Ponies!

Jan 2nd: Knoxville – Smokey Mountains, Grandfather Mountain

Jan 3rd: Nashville – Grand Ol Opry, here we come! Korea reunion numero 1 with Alex!

Jan 4th: Louisville via Mammoth Caves. Korea reunion numero 2 with Brian-san.

Jan 5th: St. Louis and Cahokia Mounds

Jan 6th: Kansas City

Jan 7th-8th: Denver. Korea reunion numero 3 with Miss Lija.

Jan 9th-10th: Grand Canyon

Jan 11th: Las Vegas

Jan 12th-16th: LA!!! Disney, Rodeo, Hollywood, and the Fam Jam. Planning on tickets to Ellen and maybe a little POP Pilates with Cassey?!

Jan 17th-19th: San Francisco. Another Korean reunion with Erica from America herself.

Jan 20th: Depart for Portland, OR

Jan 21st: Vancouver, BC – Back to the Homeland!

That’ll be it for a bit…..must make it through this last few weeks of school before heading out. Keep watching from Dec 26th for photos, stories, travel quotes, and daily musings.