Monday, January 7, 2013


The freeway was a nightmare this morning. Even on Sunday there were cars everywhere and when we hit a traffic jam we took an exit and 'winged' our way through the back streets towards Hollywood. As in all the big cities we've visited, the contrast between poor and rich neighbourhoods was stark. We drove through ghettos where the thought of the car breaking down was terrifying but as we got closer to the beach the tone changed completely.

We stopped at Venice Beach for lunch. We toyed with the idea of hiring some bikes to ride along the board walk but it was so windy we could hardly stand up let alone ride so we just walked out to the end of the pier and imagined how spectacular the beach must be in Summer.

From Venice we drove up through Santa Monica to the Hollywood Hills for a glimpse of the famous sign. It was pretty exciting to see this icon and we also had fun guessing who might live in some of the expensive homes set into the hills.

We'd really hoped to finish our holiday at a La Quinta because the chain has been an economical home to us for much of the trip. Unfortunately there isn't one in Hollywood so we settled for a Days Inn just off the strip.

There's a lot of Beale / Bourbon/ Duval St about Hollywood Boulevard! Similar homeless people with cardboard signs and costumed, would be movie stars offering photos with themselves for $1. It's not nearly as glamorous as I expected. We walked over several stars before we realised we were walking on THE walk of stars. It was fun seeking out our favourites and Taine was very excited to find Michael Jackson's star. We had dinner at a diner where Taine had his first root beer float (like a spider at home) and then wandered back to our hotel for an early night.

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