We’ve been in LA for just over three weeks now. Although it’s been a rainy past few days, being in one of the (currently) warmest places in the United States has been a pleasure. Our time has mostly been spent in Van Nuys, which boasts pretty much nothing other than Ayo’s awesome gymnastics gym, a huge and happy place on Haskell Avenue. Some updates:
- More bartering: Yesterday Ayo started her job! at the gymnastics studio’s winter camp. She originally proposed her volunteering in exchange for free classes. The gym’s owner replied that she could not volunteer for insurance reasons, but that she could work four days a week at the winter camp, get paid, and take free classes. Happy Ayo.
- Yair (me): I’m still trying to figure out how to start hiking and backpacking around here. The good hiking is at least 15 miles away and I don’t want to steal the house for the day to go for a hike. The gas expenses would rack up quickly as well. I spent a few hours last week reaching out to potential hiking partners (with cars) and I have some promising leads. We’ll see where that goes. (I also explored buying a used scooter / small motorcycle, but traveling with it and selling it after a couple of months would be too much of a pain.)
- The in-laws visit: Until last week we had spent three weeks on the Pacific Coast and hadn’t seen the beach. Ayo’s parents came in for a great visit on their way back from Thailand, staying in Manhattan Beach. While our beach day was cloudy, we enjoyed our time together and had one 80-degree day of hiking. Two highlights: a live taping of The Tonight Show and a visit to the Manhattan Beach farmers market (though Ayo decided that she likes preservatives since our bread turned green after two days).
- Parking: The happy amazement carries on, as our streak of having zero problems parking continues. Our main concerns with parking are good exposure to the sun so we can wake up (late) with our batteries close to charged, and trying not to park directly in front of someone’s house – at least not for more than one night. We’ve parked in Van Nuys, North Hollywood, Burbank, Sherman Oaks, Santa Clarita, and a few other places. No problems at all. (Keeping my fingers crossed so I don’t jinx us.) UPDATE: Ayo’s gymnastics gym just agreed to let us park in their nice and level parking lot. I’m pretty sure that there’s water there as well. Score! [Separate parking post coming up]
- The RV: Since installing our solar array with Connie, I’ve become much more comfortable ripping apart and putting back together the RV. We’ve done a good amount of tinkering and are happy with where things are. We have an appointment scheduled with a mechanic to finally fix our fresh water tank and some other things. Once that’s done, we’ll hopefully be golden.
Overall, not much to complain about other than the lack of stuff going on in Van Nuys and the distance to hiking. It’ll be interesting to see how things go now that Ayo is at the gym pretty much all day, working 9am – 3pm and taking classes well into the night. (I really enjoy watching people flipping all over the place at the gym, took a great class recently, and like the atmosphere there. When I’m around during the day I’ll probably spend some time at the gym hanging out.)
posted by jay