Arriving into the US of A! Los Angeles, California

Trip Start Apr 18, 2008
Trip End Jul 2008

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Where I stayed
Clarion Hotel

Flag of United States  , California
Saturday, April 19, 2008

It was a chilly flight for me and most annoying - you know how you always forget to pack at least one thing? WELL DAMM IT I forgot to pack two of my jumpers, which were meant to be in my day pack! Considering where we are going to be travelling, it is very stupid to have forgotten to pack my two jumpers!!!!!!!!!!!!! - Which I can even picture sitting on the couch, waiting for me to grab them on the way out the door this am! Damm it!
Finally arrived in Los Angeles, California - nice sunny California from what I've been reading. Sounds good! Its all a bit bizarre, we arrived in at 16:30, so looks like we only been flying for a couple of hours, but its actually been a very long process of almost 24 hours! due to time difference, so all in all we've actually gained a day for our holiday! Feeling a little bit apprehensive as the plane touched down, as to what might be in store at customs - but also excited; we're going to America!!!!!!!!!
As we had sort of been expecting we had issues at customs! Ahh!  I got mine stamped (Yay!) and got through (so I was going to have a good holiday LOL), but Simon had to go to the secondary custom thorough inspection point, something to do with the visa in his passport for the USA (and I suppose a holiday by myself wouldn't be as fun!, so followed him along to the custom inspection waiting area). A number of other people were waiting in the custom area, and we guessed it would be a long wait.

At the back of the room near where we were sitting, I saw a guy who looked vaguely familiar but didn't think much of it. I heard his partner whinging about how the USA always pulls her aside to what looked like a big black bodyguard, and then I heard her ordering him to go and find her 5 different pieces of luggage - a pink fluffy suitcase with diamonds, black leather suitcase, a Louis vuitton suitcase and two others. Our ears pricked up this could be interesting, normal people don't have pink fluffy suit cases with diamonds in it! Simon suddenly remarked "Hey isn't that Peter Andre and his wife Jordan (aka big boobs LOL) and also their new baby!" I looked and far out yes it was! Our first celebrity spotting!  So we did some people watching, while we were waiting she complained that last time they waited about 2 hours.

 Shortly after Simon got called up for his second inspection. And Yay! They just needed to double check his visa was legitimate. Finally we were able to go! Before we left though, we both nudged each other back and forth, deciding if we should go ask for an autograph or not. Flic worked up the courage to go say hi to them and see if they would give an autograph, cause hey? What did we have to lose if they said no?  Surprisingly, Peter was really very nice, shaking our hands and enquiring all about our trip and where we were from! His wife Katie/Jordan sort of gave us the cold shoulder, but that didn't matter we got our first Celebrity signature from Peter Andre!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

We got out of the busy airport and following the directions of the lonely planet, set out to find out about how to get public transport to the city! At a cost of $1.25 a trip, it far outweighed using the airport bus at a cost of $42 to get to the city! Firstly had to get a shuttle to the transport centre.   Our first impression of America was that (not trying to be racist!!!!!!); the white people were very rude! We asked a couple of white - as they were near us, people outside the terminal for assistance on where to get the shuttle bus, the first guy - a bus driver himself, completely ignored us as though he was deaf, the second guy also ignored us until I kept pestering him as I was getting worked up at the rudeness and said 'over there' - which referred to about twenty other buses all lined up!  Anyway we eventually got to the centre, which was a trip in itself- about twenty minutes of it being spent driving around car parks as they are absolutely huge!  

3 buses later and a speed record attempt down West Olympic blvd a -main suburban road- (we nearly got launched out of the front window at the first set of lights, due to slamming on the brakes so hard cause of how fast we were going - seriously what is the speed limit here? -felt like we were doing 150km/hr in a bus! In a city street!) We arrived at the Clarion hotel aka also known as Quality Suites And Inn. The Clarion hotel was very nice, and a serious upgrade from the hostel we had been expecting. King size bed, ensuite with a bath (woohoo!), leather desk chair, etc - we will have to be careful or we will find it to hard to convert back to hostel mode!

That night thinking that downtown Los Angeles would be a big bustling city at night, we were proved wrong!  It was extremely quiet or 'dead'. For a massive city with an impressive skyline there was nothing open near our hotel- other than a Mac Donald's and a dodgy looking taco shop and a small 7-eleven. On the main arterial road outside our hotel in downtown Los Angeles there was probably a rate of about 1 car a minute going by! Not what we were expecting for LA! We later read in our guide book and were told by a local that not all downtown cities in America are central hubs after hours and only busy during business hours except for the exception of New York, Chicago and one or two others.  The central hubs tend to be main shopping hubs i.e. for Los Angeles the place where it is happening after business hours is Hollywood Boulevard in Hollywood or maybe a mall in Beverly Hills! Not what we expected, but anyway our tea for that night was destined for a macca's deal! I would have to say Macca's in LA makes their burgers look more appealing than in Australia - heaps more salad and onion and pickles are stacked on! Anyway the interesting thing about Macca's was that we decided to eat in and can you believe it they charge you an 'Eat In Tax'! Seriously what a rip off idea for a tax!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

At the end of the day our conclusion was about the people that the Afro-Americans (who went right out of there way to help you anyway possible!!) and the Mexicans were very helpful and friendly. Far out we probably didn't really see many white people! We have learnt that half of LA's population is Mexican! And we decided the Caucasian people weren't so friendly or helpful and snubbed you off if they thought you were a tourist! Falling in love with the talk of the Black Americans and their slang "You know what I'm saying" and "Sure thang!" and "Yo hearing me" and "Yo, I'm hearing Yo" and "Yo" and "Yo take care now" on departing a bus  "yourrrrrre welcome"  and that when we said thanks for their help.

Anyways time to get over jetlag! Bedtime!
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