It’s been a week since we moved into our apartment in Los Angeles. To you say that it has been a learning experience would be an understatement. Amidst the chaos of trying to move in and get all of our stuff together and unpacked (as well as put together, thanks IKEA!) it’s been an adventure.
On Monday we moved in. Conner had his first day of work but we unloaded everything from both of our cars and shoved it into the apartment trying our best to put things away as well as we could without any furniture. That night we hit Target (which is literally 4 minutes away on foot. It’s awesome.) and got basic essentials like a bath mat, toilet paper, cleaning products, and paper towels. Fun stuff.
On Tuesday I started to talk to job recruiters and hit up Verve Coffee in West Hollywood/Beverly hills for their free wifi. It still hasn’t hit me that we live in Los Angeles and the real Hollywood sign is in my rearview mirror when I’m driving down the 405. Turns out that there’s a Verve within walking distance of my house which I would discover the next day… but it’s okay because I like exploring the city. I interviewed for a work for trade position at the cycling studio next to my apartment and took a free class which was amazing. I got the position! After cycling class, Conner and I went to Whole Foods to go grocery shopping which is in the middle of downtown where we live and bought food so that we could cook which is a lot cheaper than going out every night.
On Wednesday I went to yoga for the first time in MONTHS and later walked to Verve coffee so I wouldn’t have to face the parking struggle and explored the city on foot. We made trip number 1 to IKEA in Burbank about 15 minutes away outside the city and bought stuff we really needed before it closed at 9.
Thursday was my first time at Philz coffee in LA, I’ve been to the OG in Berkeley but it was amazing here, too. I locked down my work for trade job at the cycling studio next to my house which was exciting to have my first day on……
Friday: 6am cycling studio work! Just like old times at the yoga studio. Later in the day I drove down to Irvine to meet up with an old best friend and let me tell you… traffic is not fun in the OC/LA around 5pm.
Saturday Conner and I hiked in the Santa Monica mountains and ate Wahoos burritos for dinner on the beach. It was so nice. I love that we ca go from such an urban area to mountainous surroundings so quickly and easily.
Sunday was for apartment work… IKEA trip 2! We’re talking putting together dressers, tables, and futons here. #adulting
Now I’ve learned a lot in the last week living in one of America’s most well known cities! Here’s the short version:
What I’ve Learned So Far About Living in LA
1) Parking SUCKS. We only have one parking spot at our apartment complex and it took us five days to figure out that Conner could park in our guest parking overnight for $12 compared to the $35 a night at surrounding parking garages. There is nowhere to park and when there is, it costs way too much money. The silver lining in a parking predicament is finding somewhere that will validate your parking so that you get to pay less if you buy something like at a grocery store.
2) Driving 0.5 miles will take half an hour… Okay maybe that’s a bit of an exaggeration but there are so many people in such a compact area that driving takes longer than walking, sometimes. You know that saying “nobody walks in LA?” That’s definitely not true downtown as it’s a lot easier to walk places then it is to drive anywhere. Also, if you have to drive somewhere then you better not try to do it anytime between the hours of 6:30 AM to 10 AM or 3 PM to 7 PM or else you’ll be sitting in two+ hours of extra traffic. Seriously, it’s brutal.
3) People are friendly. People are good people around the world. I have learned this by studying abroad by living abroad and it’s no different living in Los Angeles: a city which seems like it would be cold and hard on the outside but in reality these stereotypes of shallowness and unfriendliness are untrue. Everyone I have met so far, from the security guard at our apartment complex to the woman who helped me get my Wi-Fi installed has been incredibly helpful and has given us the best help that they can.
4) Living in a city is awesome because you have everything that you could ever need within 1 mile of you. The Target is walking distance, the Whole Foods is .4 miles away and I’m living surrounded by 10 to 12 coffee shops within just stones throw (dangerous!). I can walk to my job at the cycling studio in five minutes. It’s also not THAT hard get to to other places outside of the city like Santa Monica, Venice, Beverly Hills, or Hollywood as these are all within 30 minutes driving… and it would be even shorter if there wasn’t so much traffic.
5) The amount of culture that’s here is insane. The fashion. The attitude. The opportunity. I have been lucky enough to have lived at very nice places all of my life, and I am now living in LA which is also a very nice place… with a lot of diversity. There are different cultures and people of different backgrounds of different ages and different ethnicities of different religions and different mindsets, and we’re all here, living within 2 miles of each other… and it’s very interesting mix. This comes in handy when you’re looking for friends. As a result, there is usually someone with similar interests as you somewhere close.
But the best part about living in Los Angeles as that there’s just so much to do all the time. It’s overwhelming. From “boozy succulent wreath crafting happy hours” to “candlelight outdoor yoga on a rooftop,” to any concert or convention you could ever imagine, it’s happening here in LA. And it’s really fun!
Los Angeles is the city with incredible opportunity if you put yourself out there and try to take advantage of it. I’ll keep updating on the adventure, here.