Darker Side of the City

We had about fourteen hours left in Los Angeles and we were ready to make the most of it. We left the Airbnb early and with our backpacks strapped on, we embarked on our touristy finale. First stop: the iconic Hollywood Walk of Fame.

Wanting to beat the crowds, I’d planned this for the morning. But without all the people, it just looked really dirty. There were also so many souvenir shops, it began to feel really cheap and comical. I was glad no mob mentality would force me into a spending frenzy.

Then we headed over to the Original Farmer’s Market in the Grove. There was so much food and everything smelled so good it took us at least half an hour just to decide what to have (I did breakfast crepe with fresh squeezed strawberry juice – yum!). We walked around a bit, had some waffle cup espresso shots, bought cool sunglasses, and window shopped one of the trendiest areas in the city.

Deciding it was time for some culture to escape the materialism pit, we started on our museum journey. We explored the outdoor exhibits at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. I especially loved the light posts area because of the perfectly placed columns in perfect rows. Not only did it please my orderly mindset, it was fun to have so much Singing-in-the-Rain dancing.

As a fan of true crime podcasts, I’d heard of the special Museum of Death that had just opened up and thought it’d be interesting. Did I think it would be fun? Unsure. But spoiler alert, it wasn’t. As much into horror and true crime I am, looking up close at so much death was just disturbing. I sped though the more graphic exhibits and honestly spent a lot of it just trying to make it to the end.

It was a relief to make it back outside. I was glad our next few hours would be exploring a fun area in the sun. Olvera Street was our next destination, and being familiar with Mexico, it really was like a little town in the middle of downtown LA. A short walk away we headed to Little Tokyo! The city really is a little hodgepodge of every culture – no where else can you walk from Mexico to Japan and get a very authentic experience.

Little Tokyo really brightened us up, everything was so cute and colorful! We were still trying to shake some of the darker city honesty of the morning off us after having spent a lot of the previous day convening with nature. Our backs were starting to hurt a bit because of our backpacks so with some extra time from speeding through the previous museum, we even went to the famous Pink’s. The line was long but we had to! I got fries and Jenna said the hot dogs were worth it. Plus, all the different food was a big mood booster!

It was time to head to another country – I mean LA area – the Venice Canals! Walking through the streets was so crazy! It really was so beautiful and surprising in the middle of such a populated city. The sun was setting fast, but we had a nice evening stroll through the waterways and over the cute bridges.

We rented bikes again and made our way back to Santa Monica Pier as our final event. We’d loved our nature day so much, we wanted to get back near the beach. Seeing the packed pier at night was also a new experience! Everything really felt like a fair. We got ice cream and hit on by some skater teenagers so it was like stepping into the past in a way.

It was a perfect way to end what had turned out to be a bit of a darker day than I’d originally intended. It was kind of great too in a way, because it felt like we had the full Los Angeles treatment – the nature and the urban, the good and the ugly!

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