Los Angeles Revisited

February this year, after the wedding reception in Alaska, Mike and I had like 4 days left before we had to live separate for the last time starting March until September 2014. So we choose to spend it in LA. However, my LA revisited is not any grandeur than my first short visit. Mike hates LA and all my purchases costs more because LA has this service tax and government tax, unlike Alaska. I also wonder, since LA has all these taxes, why do they expect tips again?

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We didn’t go to the places where most tourists should go. Although I really wanted it since I’m still in the ‘Tourist’ category, but Mike has a different idea about it. To him, I will be back to LA anytime soon and everything in LA appeared so expensive when your cash is limited.

Then I remember, how Mike really wanted to go up to Petronas Twin Tower bridge. But until now, after his 3rd year visit, I still ignore it since I think we have plenty of time to do it since I live in Malaysia and Mike will always come back here – every year. And Mike – refused to go up there alone without me. Whereas, just like a typical jerk –  I rather spent time at the mall and movie theater, restaurants and home than bringing him up there to experience Petronas Twin Tower height. While I was busy wanted to be on the highest tower in every city in the world, I didn’t bring him up to the KL Tower yet!

So, this is how it feels to get to taste your own medicine huh?

In LA, we tried to find the cheapest but decent hotel to stay AND has an easy access to public transportation. So we choose to live in Downtown LA. Although I wasn’t really happy with the choice, but in the end, I realized it gave me kinda different LA experience. I felt like I just move to LA and adjusting myself with the normal daily life here.

Even there was one morning I got the experience to get down to the street to find good coffee and ibuprofen for Mike because he couldn’t get up because of terrible headache.

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I wish we had more time and wake up a little bit earlier (er, that’s me. Usually Mike done with his morning exercise, shower and fully dressed as early as 8am). There are so much stuff surrounding Downtown LA – Koreatown, Fashion District, Chinatown and Little Tokyo.

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As usual, our favorite transportation will be light rail. TAP (Transit Access Pass) works just like TnG in Malaysia. Train and buses. It also come with 3, 5 and 7 days package. the card itself costs $2 and can be converted into day pas which is $6 and you can tap in and out as much as you want in one day. suitable for those who wanted to explore LA by public transportation.

We were landed at Long Beach Airport from Anchorage, Alaska. Too bad we were exhausted from 9 hours flight from Anchorage with a stop over in Arizona. So all we wanted to do on day 1 was sleep. What’s with Long Beach?. Are you kidding me? It’s Snoop Dog birth place!

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Although this is a revisit to LA, but the experience was totally different. Before this, all I think of LA is glitz and glamour, finding stars on walk of fame and meet Spiderman and Batman. People dress up nice and eating at fancy restaurants. Theme Parks and Grand shopping malls.

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But this is what I’ve got when I traveled with Mike. Seeing the reality. See and do things like the locals do. I get to see Compton too. Because for Malaysian, Compton is a brand of some wrist watch. It’s an eye opener for me because, previously, all I can think of LA is Beverly Hills, Rodeo Drive and Hollywood. *tiba tiba rasa blonde sangat. Dumbass*

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This remind of Kg Baru the Setinggarden. Don’t you think?

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So, it’s nothing much different around the world. While you condemning the country you are living now, what makes you think there is a much better place to live? After having fun from sightseeing at touristy spots for few days, people are quickly to conclude everything is far better than their own country. I think Asian always think like that.

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And I can see a lot of homeless people among the well dressed people. At night, they sleep under the paper box by the streets. Every 10 minutes, I always encounter with people asked for a small change (Duit syiling yang tak nak pakai). Along the streets, on the train, some are still young! Like, they really can work at fast food restaurant But I don’t know why they begging around for small change and food 🙁 They look healthy to me. (I’m sorry, I work 2-3 jobs. 1 permanent on Monday to Friday, 1 on weekends and 1 is online business. So I really can’t understand the begging part.)

 

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So, this is Downtown LA. I don’t really have much picture here because I was busy walking to find decent food to eat. And damn Mike for walking so fast. I think that is his way to avoid me from asking him to take my picture while walking!

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Downtown LA to me is like a skid row town with a lot of refurbishment in progress. Old building and new one standing side by side, um, macam Tunku Abdul Rahman / Sogo area/ Brickfields gitu. Ha, just like that. I don’t think fancy Malaysian people who used to travel in Business Class with Full Board meals package cukup kental for this area.

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Do not get offended. But both of us had to remove our fancy diamond wedding rings here at night. Yes we love the idea of living the local experience, but we are not willing to experience the ugly side of it yet. or ever.

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Snacks come in handy here. Clean packed fresh fruits packed salads are everywhere  and came in a decent portion. Look! I ate mango from PERU! ha!

7-11 in the states are unlike the one in Malaysia. They have self service coffee counter with wide range of hot coffee just as good as Starbucks. And it costs like $2 for tall cup. No wonder Mike whine about how expensive is good coffee in Malaysia 🙁

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Ok la, got one picture of me dekat Downtown LA.

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Besides encountering beggars asking for small change every 10 minutes, I also noticed that I received all these flyers shoved into my face at equally the same time. Hmm, dalam kekalutan hidup ni, syukurlah people still remember their God and faith. Tapi Scientology tu, tak berapa pasti la. Actually I did ask Mike to take the tour into Scientology Church when we pass by one at Hollywood Boulevard. But he’s not interested.

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The next day we went to Hollywood Boulevard, well, where else – the walk of fame lah. Ceritanya sebab nak pegi Victoria Secret & Sephora.

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and to stroll down the road in snail motion. Remember my previous visit to Hollywood Walk of Fame was by Half day tour package? And I only got like 30 minutes to look around plus my foreign tourist partner was busy buying GnC supplements and made us running back to the tour bus. So this time I really have ample time to explore this area and might skip it like FOREVER whenever I come back to LA.

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Look at every stars, the shop left and right, snaps some pictures.

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Window shopping… but trust me, if I have a kid, this won’t be just a WINDOW shopping.

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and oh, too bad we were there a little bit earlier. Or else I will be able to get a glimpse of the stars arriving for the Oscars 2014.

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But I manage to see the preparation for this big event. they were setting up Dolby Theatre a week before. We were there 3 days before the event, the giant Oscar statue already took place, red carpet rolled out and TV network already starting to interview passersby for prediction that who and what movie is going to take the award home.

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The good thing is, they never chased the public out from the area while the setting up is taking places. I managed to step on the red carpets here on the entrance hall of Dolby Theatre where on 2nd March, 2 days after that, stars like Brad Pitt and Halle Berry will step on my footsteps 😛 kaannn… bukan aku yang pijak footsteps diorang…

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oh, sambung balik kisah jalan jalan di Hollywood Boulevard.

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Apparently my husband can fit into “Ripley’s believe it or not” for his poses and actions… He seems can’t pose normally like other people. Actually he hates to get his picture taken. He won’t pose for the camera most of the time unless I begged for it. He don’t do selfie, he don’t really smile for normal camera shots, he DO NOT even LOOK at the camera. But when he is in a good mood, he became so DRAMATIC.

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Yep. He was all I’m looking for! (Robert Downey Jr). And yes, our hands fits each other! lololol

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and also my other hero. Only these two are picture worthy.

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hehe. bila dah start pointing tu, harus lah beli.

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Tadaah! my first time experiencing Hot Stone™ Warm & Delicious™ Desserts by Cold Stone Creamery. I never had thick chocolatey ice cream until here, in USA.

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Since monopod wasn’t  invented (or maybe I still don’t know it existence that time) , so we don’t have picture taken together until there is a guy offered to take it for us. So, this is the ONLY decent photo we have for both of us during our stay in LA 🙁

I noticed that, when I was traveling in Asia, I had to look around for someone who is trustworthy enough to help me with the camera. I have to be like “er, excuse me, can you help us with the picture?” (waving hand to his/her face). But in the West, they offered the help once they noticed you has no one to take the picture for you or both of you.

 

I noticed this post is becoming too long and too boring already.

So this is to be continued.

Heh.

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