Coaster Crazy

Trip Start Dec 26, 2009
Trip End Nov 08, 2010

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Flag of United States  , California
Friday, March 19, 2010

We arrived in LA for the second time on St Patrick's Day! We got here pretty late (possibly due to free late check out letting us sleep in in Vegas) and so had to battle traffic... but the carpool lane is such win. Almost nobody uses it! After finding a place to keep poor, long-suffering Frankfurt and having dinner, we were pretty tired and decided to skip the pubcrawls lots of people were planning to go on. Instead we went to the hostel's free comedy night, most of which was very good. The hostel gets decent comedians who use us as new material soundboards. A good deal.

Ben finally got to right an ancient wrong the next day - by going to Universal Studios. His dad brought him and his brother to the USA when Ben was eight, but the night before they went to Universal Studios Ben ate a bad hamburger and was too sick to go. And now, 15 years later, he finally got to make up for it! We had a great, very full and long day, but we managed to do everything we wanted. In the morning there were almost no lines and even in the afternoon they were only 15 minutes or so - the joys of traveling during off season. It was mostly shows, but there were a few good rides - The Mummy's dark coaster, Jurassic Park's river raft with the giant plunge and the Simpson's simulator coaster. The Terminator show was particularly good, with a combination of live actors and 3D movie interaction. We went on the studio tour of course, and saw lots of famous movie and TV sets - Jaws, Wisteria Lane from Desperate Housewives, War of the Worlds, various Western sets, the sky from the Truman show, etc. Good fun overall, and Ben felt vindicated.

On the way home we took a stroll down Hollywood Boulevard. The Walk of Fame is not really all it's cracked up to be - it's just lots of stars, some of them pretty dirty. But the Chinese Theatre, with all the hand and footprints of stars, was fun - we took some touristy photos. Ben has bigger feet than all of them.

Bens side of the hummer party:

When we first heard about the Hummer party that the hostel throws every week, we thought it was too good to be true. The day before (and it seemed every night) the hostel had taken everyone out clubbing and so everyone was hung over on the day of the hummer party so no one had signed up. When we arrived back from Our day out there were almost 2 hummers full of people signed up and before we left there was a long waiting list.

Everyone gathered out the front of the hostel waiting for the hummers to arrive and we started meeting more new people. Two guys on spring break, two guys from ireland, a guy from the uk and half of Scandinavia. There was a group of about 14 people who were mostly from Norway, and a few from Sweden. The hummers arrived and it turned out one was a stretch escalade and the other was a brand new stretch hummer. We lucked out and managed to go in the brand new hummer that was decked out with neon lights inside, So we piled the alcohol in and jumped in and started the party.

We had free champagne and vodka, and things started to get pretty rowdy pretty quickly. before we knew it people were being mature, sticking heads out of windows yelling at people, you know the usual. I thought i would be smart and did the same thing, although there happened to be a cop car driving past so i quickly withdrew and wound up the window as innocently as i could. That'll learn me.

We arrived at the pub we were going to, and were told that many times celebrities had been spotted having a drink there so if we saw one don't be all touristy and freak out at them, but there was no one there. There was a mechanical bull however, and mixed with the copious amount of alcohol we had just drunk, people started signing up almost as soon as we arrived. Drinks were very expensive so as we didn't really need to drink too more we all started socializing some more and started to watch some of the people trying their hand at bull-riding.

One of the girls from Norway got bucked off on her first try in no more than 10 seconds, and then Amanda had a go and did really well, i even recorded it on the camera, coming to facebook near you! Then the Norwegian girl tried again and did much better, and everyone cheered her on until she got bucked off again. Then a tiny Asian girl wearing what had to be described as a lingerie looking top decided to try her hand and it was hilarious. Within the first 10 seconds she too got bucked off, but held on for dear life with both hands and one leg on the side of the bull for at least another minute before she finally let go. Good effort.

We socialized some more before being told that the hummers had arrived again and we had to get everyone back in pronto, they were parked illegally. The funny thing is most of the time you can get away with illegal parking for a while with a normal sized car, but with two stretch hummers parked behind one another, its a little conspicuous. We all piled in, poured some more drinks and headed to the club.

Now this is where things start getting a little hazy. I was getting drunk, the booze was free, who can blame me, and i could tell Amanda was too. I know we got to the club, lost each other for a while, danced with some people we hadn't met before and generally made a fool of ourselves. The club was only 2 blocks from the hostel and while i was drunk, Amanda was getting wasted so i decided we should go home around 2 or so, but got distracted by a pizza diner on the way home.

We ordered a slice of pizza each and somehow managed to sit down next to a group of 3 black people and start chatting. Amanda started telling one of the guys how jealous she was of him for being black because she always got so sun burnt, and this was a red flag my drunk brain caught and decided it was time to head home. They were really nice, but we were apparently going to go on a walk around Hollywood the next day so we needed at least some rest. I got into bed and fell asleep, and when i woke up extremely hungover the next day i told Amanda there was no way i was leaving the hostel and she was on her own. What i didnt know was that in between amanda taking off her shows and taking out her earrings, she managed to get herself locked out of the hostel, wearing no shoes and having no idea how she got there. She was banging on all the windows and yelling for help before one of the people who worked there let her back in and helped her back into the room. Drunken LA parties!

The next morning, I got up (only slightly hungover) to go on the hostel's tour of Beverly Hills and Bel-Air, but Ben moaned at the thought and stayed snuggled up for a sleep in. The tour guide was a crazy and possibly high guy, but it was a lot of fun. We took the bus and wandered through the suburbs, seeing houses of various stars. Our tour guide Adam is good friends with Snoop Dogg's personal assistant JD (who also happens to be Hugh Hefner's nephew), and since Snoop Dogg is out of town JD let us inside his house :D. Adam said that has only happened twice in the year and a half he has been running the tours, so we felt special. His house is pretty amazing, I wouldn't mind one like it! We saw the bedroom that Michael Jackson died in (from the outside obviously) - there is candle wax still everywhere out the front of his gates from mourning fans who gathered there after his death. Quite frankly, we did see lots of homes, and they are really nice, but at the end of the day you are just looking at really nice homes no matter who lives there.

I did enjoy going down Rodeo Drive, even if the fact that I can't even afford a handkerchief there is depressing. If I ever get extremely rich I'll be coming back to do more than window shop! Really, really nice designer stuff. We did see Paula Abdul driving a car down the street - my only star sighting! And the world's fastest, most expensive car was parked on the side of the road - Adam said it belongs to the guy who owns one of the most expensive stores on Rodeo Drive. Looks a bit like a spaceship.

I returned to find Ben still in bed - but on the laptop. At 4:30 in the afternoon! I suggested driving out to look at the Hollywood sign, but he wasn't interested and I had seen it in the distance so it wasn't a big deal. We scrounged up dinner and went to bed in preparation for the most fun day of all the next day - Six Flags!

For the uninformed (and I was before Ben enlightened me) Six Flags is a theme park chain - but the theme parks are for adults and full of rollercoasters. The one we went to has 13 rollercoasters and 5 water rides (and lots of other tame rides that we didn't care about). The problem was, it was only open weekends and the weekend we were there was Spring Break - and therefore it was extremely busy! Because Ben has basically drooled every time he has talked about it, we decided to do it right and bought passes that let us skip most of the lines and ride each ride twice (which unfortunately always annoys the people behind you in line, but means no lines for you!). It was expensive but in the end, completely worth it as we zipped past lines up to 3 hours long. If you care to know exactly how awesome the coasters were, look up Six Flags Magic Mountain - just let me say we rode coasters upside down, sideways, backwards, hanging, through flames and fog, standing up, down steep, steep plunges into underground tunnels and through double loops and twirls and spins and impossible twists (sometimes while also upside down, backwards and spinning around). It was amazing. We went on 9 coasters - one was closed, two we skipped because they weren't as good, and one excellent-looking one Ben was too tall for. Our favourites were Tatsu (you go through a loop head-first while hanging against the harness, sitting perpendicular to normal - it feels backwards) and X2 (which is also sitting perpendicular to normal, but the other way to Tatsu - you go down the drops backwards while each car spins as the whole coaster goes around loops through fire and fog effects). We stayed for 10 hours, and we finally coastered-out at about 8:30pm.

We switched hostels so we could return the our beloved Frankfurt to where we got him (we miss you Frankie!), and because the new one had a free shuttle to the airport, so we could get there easily for an early flight the next morning!

Love, coasters and stretch Hummers,
Amanda and Ben
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MUm/Ruth on

I see those horse riding lessons finally paid off!!!

Nick on

Finally! You got me an everlasting gobstopper right Benny?

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