Driving North

Over the next month, I am getting out my comfort zone.  Today I head to the Bay Area (South Bay) to see what all the fuss is about.  Next week I will spend a month house sitting for a friend in Los Angeles.

Let me be clear: this is not an adventure.  Though the distance from San Diego to San Jose, California is around 600 miles, most Californians would consider this an excursion.  An adventure requires that you push yourself beyond what you know.  For instance, for some reason, driving from San Francisco to Portland, OR sounds like an adventure.  That’s also a 600 mile journey.  I rarely hear about people doing that drive.

This morning, I’m at a Starbucks near, what seems to be, L.A.’s hipster central: Silver Lake/Los Feliz.  It’s before 9am and it’s so obvious how much more these people care about what they wear than the same Starbucks fans in the North County of San Diego.  Skinny jeans for work?!   Does a fedora, a track jump suit, and basketball shoes go together?  Most people in San Diego either clearly look like they are going to work or like they rolled out of bed.

Another small observation:  Both last night and this morning I’ve been hearing the din of helicopters.  (In San Diego, the only the thing I hear in the air are the F-16s around Miramar.)  Avoiding traffic is not a spectator sport here.  Los Angeles is a gigantic concrete expanse that starts at the Pacific Ocean and extends 2-3 hours in traffic to the east.  (Distance isn’t as important as time.)  Every city has their collection of freeways.  These are L.A.’s:

LA-Arpts-FreWaI’m looking forward to going to the South Bay.  Since I returned from Ghana, I’ve been to the Bay Area three times but I always spend time in San Francisco proper.  I’m looking forward to seeing suburbia NorCal style!

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