Kia Ora…

Hey all,
I know, I know i’ve been ignoring my duties to the alternative attic for the last two weeks but you’ll have to accept my apologies travelling has been a bit of a whirlwind. I’ve been to Los Angeles, partied hard in Auckland and now i’m taking a well deserved break in the coastal resort of Paihia for 9 days. This will give me the much needed time to catch you all up on what i’ve up too and my journey so far.

So I landed in Los Angeles on the 28th of December, those of you who know me know how nervous I was of being turned away due to my medication and diagnosis but that all went smoothly. Well I got hilariously lost trying to work out which desk was the entry to America but they let me in and gave me a 2 year visa free entry stamp. Honestly but this time I was knackered with very heavy bags so I made the rookie mistake of getting into a taxi which should have taken 15 minutes to get to my hostel but instead took nearly 45 mins and cost me $60. By this time I didn’t care, I just wanted too sleep for about a year. I finally got to bed and the next day I got my first impression of Venice beach, it’s a dump but its a quirky dump with a very pretty beach at sunset at least. Think Camden in the sun but with added weed and a lot more homeless people. I think that was the biggest culture shock for me, there isn’t a middle class in Los Angeles. You are either homeless, just coping, stinking rich or a tourist. Unfortunately this mentality means you are a target for just about every homeless person, con artist, pick pocket and desperate person around and it doesn’t feel the safest place in the world.

My first trip out of the hostel was too Hollywood and that was a real shock. I was expecting a modern city centre with shiny stars on the floor, very much oxford street with a walk of fame and more glitzy. What I got was a very run down and not looked after street with some seriously dodgy places at both ends of it. I honestly thought I’d missed something?! I walked all the way down the walk of fame looking for the bit I was expecting but nope that was Hollywood. I decided to purchase a multi pass to the Ripley’s attractions and actually really enjoyed myself running up and down the musical stairs and being a big kid again. The wax museum was not as much fun but then again by that time I was tired, cold and fed up so I went for a walk and came across another museum called the Museum of Broken Relationships. I loved this museum, in case you don’t know what it is its a collection of objects donated to the museum by members of the public after a break up. Each object has a story and its fascinating and really made me think and let go of a lot on my chest.

Socially the hostel was excellent i made some amazing friends especially on new years eve as we all went out in a massive group. The group ended up splitting up somehow and 6 of us were left on our own, what do you do when everyone desserts you? You go to bubba gump shrimp and drink cocktails and then go and sit on santa monica beach and not see any fireworks and sing. New years eve is when I met one of my best friends on this whole trip and we weren’t apart until I flew out of the country on the 4th, I still miss her. Suddenly the trip opened to new possibilities and we explored Santa Monica for gluten free options of everything! We found gluten free fried chicken and waffles,burgers, tacos and I started my love affair with orange cream soda and frozen yoghurt shops.

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