After returning to London from a quick trip to Los Angeles, I contemplated why I give L.A. such a hard time. As a former Los Angelena, I admit to considering California in general and L.A. in particular a sun-soaked drive-thru paradise, lacking a soul. I’ve even said LaLa land is style over substance over-flowing with pretty-but-vacant people. In fairness to me, it’s not totally untrue that swarms of self-absorbed, botox-loving, globally unaware people do flood the tree-lined, perfectly manicured streets. Yet there’s more to the city of Angels; I’ve met many of my dearest friends in Los Angeles, truly amazing individuals. Plus I lived there for eight years, how bad could it be?
Here are ten things I miss about LA-living:
1. Amazingly fresh, delicious and diverse food choices; I especially miss-crave LA’s authentic Mexican food.
2. The Mondrian, Firefly, Bar Marmont at the Chateau, and all the latest I’m-too-cool trendy places.
3. Freeways going everywhere, 12-lanes of stop-and-go on the 10, 405, 110, 5, 101, and 134 to name a few.
4. Driving north on the 405 FWY and just after Mulholland descending into “the Valley” of San Fernando in the evening when the lights of Sherman Oaks twinkle invitingly; I have no time for snobs who dismiss Valley-life.
5. Super-supermarkets like Gelson’s, Trader Joe’s, and Whole Foods teeming with lush and organic choices.
6. The variety of niche areas like downtown (DTLA), Hollywood, Bel Air, Silverlake, and beach cities from Malibu and Santa Monica to Marina del Rey and Huntington.
7. Road trips to San Diego, Orange County (the OC), Palm Springs, Big Bear, Vegas-baby, Mammoth, and Tijuana (TJ).
8. Walk? Not a chance. Valet parking EVERYWHERE.
9. The grand Boulevards: Sunset, Santa Monica, Hollywood, and Melrose.
10. Yes, sunny again; oh how I miss the sun.
Time to say it, sing it with me, “I love…LA!”