…and move to California! Or at least listen to this very nostalgic song from my high school days. It has been a season of travel recently and just days after returning from Spokane, my suitcase was re-packed and headed back to the west coast. This time the trip was last minute and mostly to help out some friends with babysitting their three kids while they were doing some work out in California. It was a little bit of a crazy trip, involving lots of people, lots of driving, and lots of luggage, but getting to see a new piece of the country and having fun with friends made it all worth it.
We flew into Los Angeles and immediately made the 3+ hour drive through the San Bernardino Mountains to Big Bear Lake.
It was cool to the see the transformation to the landscape as we drove further and further from the city. The desert all of a sudden had greenery!
An awesome part of our Big Bear Lake visit (besides a mind-blowing apple fritter) was an off trail, morning hike where we got a great view of the lake and surrounding area.
My other favorite part was visiting a local zoo/animal sanctuary. All the animals were native to the area (part cool/part terrifying) and caged in such a way that you could get REALLY close to them. A little different and smaller than your typical zoo, but I loved it.
The best moment at the zoo was when these dudes started howling and I thought, “Hey, I know that sound!”. Apparently California brings back all kinds of nostalgic memories for me.
Is this really the only food picture I got the whole trip? Best Mexican chicken I have EVER TASTED. After a few days by the lake, we packed up again and drove to spend the rest of the week in Los Angeles.
You can’t tell from this photo, but the pizza here was ridiculously good. Of course I don’t remember what the restaurant was called or where it was…
We could actually see the Hollywood sign from where we were staying, but not close enough to get a good picture with my camera, so I snapped this while we visited the Griffith Observatory.
Even though we didn’t get to see the live demonstration of the Tesla coil, it felt so cool just to be standing next to a real, historical one.
Since this was my first time to California, I’d only heard about the pollution and smog in L.A. and let me tell you, it’s real, people. It’s real.
A fantastic week ended with getting to see a dear friend from college and catching up on the last five years of our lives. Plus, she introduced me to genuine ramen and my life will never be the same.
Traveling, food, and people – it doesn’t get much better than that!
P.S. If you are visiting L.A., make time for breakfast here.