Local International Trips

One of the things I love the best about LA is the experience of being in another country. Yesterday a friend and I went to Natura, a day spa in Korea town. It was early in the day and I started out being the only non-Asian person in the spa. This older Korean lady was trying to explain something to me in Korean and I couldn’t understand a word. I tried explaining back to her in English that I didn’t understand her, all with no luck, buck naked in a hot tub. I truly felt like an outsider in another country, but left the spa refreshed and ready for new adventures.

As I drove home, I passed a guy pressing fresh orange juice out of a shopping cart, next to a vendor selling sizzling hotdogs, reminding me of Copenhagen and Fortaleza at the same time.

Then for the morning dog walk in West Hollywood – the Russian Immigrant part of West Hollywood, not the rainbow part. Dog and I wander through Plummer Park overhearing phone conversations, low whispers between couples and the clink and chingle of dominoes. The only English I hear are my dog commands. I love listening to the soft whispers of Russian and reading the plaques in Cyrillic and English glyphs.

I can visit each of these different countries, neighborhoods in less time than it takes to drive to LAX or Burbank; and return to the familiar coziness of my house after each jaunte. Turn on the espresso machine, fill it with Italian coffee, make myself a mocha and listen to the rain and remember San Francisco.

5 thoughts on “Local International Trips”

  1. See, that movie Crash was bullpucky. People do genuinely like each other in Los Angeles from time to time! You don’t have to crash your dang car into someone to experience their culture!

  2. Want to have brunch in Thailand? Check out the outdoor marketplace in the courtyard of Wat Thai buddhist temple at the corner of Coldwater & Roscoe.

    Lots of vendors selling all kinds of foods such as mango salad, fried bananas and pad thai, and the air is filled with the murmuring of soft thai voices.

  3. LA is my personal Bladerunner. We all mash-up here, and that is the charm. If I had to rely on W.L.A. for my cultural values I would shoot myself. Long live the mash-up.

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