After three hours of delays and a couple of minor misadventures (almost missing our connecting flight and losing our hotel reservation), we arrived in Los Angeles late Thursday night and crashed in our hotel room. When we went for a dip in the hotel pool on Friday, we were the only swimmers in the area as the rest of the hotel had been rented out for a California teachers conference on literacy. The conference worked to our advantage in avoiding the expensively-priced hotel food as there were bountiful amounts of fresh bread rolls and chocolate frosted cake that the waiters allowed us to whisk away and eat poolside. (Jay was hesitant to ask, but it was a no-lose situation so my gumption paid off!)
We spent the weekend with the local Jewish community and – after two months of beans and rice – it was SO nice to enjoy some traditional Jewish food. Our weekend host is an awesome guy and entertainment lawyer named Shep who has one of the most beautiful homes I have ever seen (including music room and recording studio) and… who happens to be a celebrity. Well, to me anyway. There is a family back in Riverdale that I love – they are talented and thoughtful and a whole bunch of wonderful things. One member of this family, Lamelle, is an incredible vocalist and violinist, and created music with a band called Ashira during her days on the West Coast. When I walked into Shep’s house, I immediately recognized the original Ashira artwork on the wall and he explained that he was in the band with Lamelle. Way cool!
Today we are hiking to the Hollywood sign and doing some generally fun and touristy LA things with a close friend of mine, Josh Sussman. We grew up doing theater together in New Jersey and he is one of the few people who moved out to Hollywood and actually ‘made it’ by throwing pretensions aside and focusing on his niche – the dorky, nerdy high schooler role. It seems to have worked for Josh, as it has landed him roles on Nickelodeon, Disney and most recently as a supporting character in the Glee cast.
We pick up the RV tomorrow morning – excited to meet her and continue the adventure!
UPDATE: When we were hanging out with Josh he was recognized everywhere, which was more of an interesting experience for us than for him. (He’s used to it and is flattered, but says that some people can be too aggressive about it. Also, some photos added.
posted by amybetho