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I Love L.A.

March 19, 2016

Well I made it!

It wasn’t an easy trip to say the least.

It started with waking up to 4″ of overnight snow in Fort Collins. Not an unmanageable amount but enough to make travel to Denver down the Roller Derby track known as I25 a bit of a challenge.  Prior to heading to DIA I had to stop in Aurora. A 75 minute trip normally. 150 minutes yesterday. I arrived at the event when lunch was served. I ate, grabbed my free Schlager, and it was off to DIA.

other than issues with the March Madness app (I missed the Michigan State-MTSU game), things went smoothly and the flight to Vegas was a good one. On the ground at 4:45PM. visions of arriving in LA by 9:30.

How wrong I was.

Because the McCarron Airport that I remember from all of the business travel is not the same.  And the city and the surrounding area is a Hell hole.

My baggage claim area was different than the normal one. It required a shuttle for which I waited about20 minutes. The bag arrived after another wait. Then another shuttle to get a rental car which had another 20 minute wait.  Then another long wait in line to pick up my car.  Upon leaving the airport, I stopped at a convenience store to pick up some lemonade and use the rest room.  It was one where I had to get a key from the clerk at the register.  I headed to the rest room and some clown decided he wanted to beat me to the rest room and ran in front of me. I showed him the key. He backed off.  I left the rest room and he tried to grab the key from me. I informed him it was my responsibility to return the key to the clerk and he could get it there.  

I got in my car and headed toward the freeway. I looked at the time and it was 7:15. It had taken. 2.5 hours to pickup a bag, pick up a rental car, and take a leak. My ETA was now about 11:15pm.

Somewhere between Barstow and Victorville, I started to feel the effect of a long day.  My eyes started to close so I pulled off the road to rest for a few minutes and decided to back off the 75mph speed I was driving. ETA became 11:30pm.

And the. It happened.

I zinged when I should have zagged in the maze of freeways on the outskirts of the city.  I decided to make lemonade out of it. Rather than backtracking, I keep going until I got to a Santa Monica Blvd exit. The street that my hotel is on.  I got to drive though the hopping club scene in West LA and the edge of Beverly Hills.

Which was special in and of itself because it bought me back nearly 49 years.

Most of you know that I grew up on the East Coast.  But in the late summer of 1967, our family hopped on a TWA flight to Los Angeles to vacation.  It was a magical trip for me.  My first flight ever.  Headphones playing Scott McKenzie’s “If You’re going to San Francisco, Be Sure to Wear Some Floweres in Your Hair”.

We didn’t stay in a hotel that week. My grandmother was a live-in for a rich old widow in Beverly Hills. The rich lady was out of town so we stayed at her place on Alta Drive just off Santa Monica Blvd.

And suddenly there was Alta drive on my right and the house I has occupied on that magical trip way back when.A visit to Disneyland,an LA-SF NFL exhibition game at The Coliseum.   It brought back memories of my grandmother, the kindest and most special woman that I have ever known. (Don’t tell my mom that. She’d be hurt)

And suddenly there was my hotel on the edge of Westwood.I checked in.

Midnight!

And immediately went to bed. 

 I’m about 1.5 miles from Pauley Pavilion.  

Can’t wait!

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