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Joshua Tree NP to LA

UNITED KINGDOM | Sunday, 18 October 2015 | Views [175]

A quieter night last night, the storms had moved on, bright sunny day with a few clouds. We headed for Palm Springs, as recommended by our host, on the way to Los Angeles. As we dropped down from the plateau into the San Jacinto Valley we saw thousands of wind turbines in lines across the head of the valley. The cooler temperatures we had enjoyed first thing were rapidly increasing, by the time we hit the valley floor it was in the mid 80s F.

Exiting Route10, we entered Palm Springs from the south, all looked very neat, almost manicured, plenty of palms and other desert plants and very green grass. It all looked unreal, neat houses and gardens, wide streets, too too boring, so we headed back to the highway for LA.

We joined Highway 10, the Christopher Columbus Transcontinental Highway, which varied from four to six lanes and they were always full, everyone travelling at about the speed limit, 65 or 70mph, including the heavy trucks. It's a bit daunting when these monsters pass you. Definite case of having to concentrate! It seemed like hours before we arrived in LA, a huge sprawl, each town or city merging into the next. There was heavy low cloud, it was humid and very hazy. The exit we needed was closed, a huge mudslide had blocked the road, so we had to navigate around the closure, just a tad stressful for the navigator, before finally arriving at Paramount Pictures Studio where we were to pick up the keys to our lodgings.

OK, we originally booked through Airbnb to get an apartment in West Hollywood, but the owner cancelled. Ruth, who knows the mother of an executive Vice President of Paramount (Intellectual Property lawyer) who had a town house in LA, not far from the studio. To cut a long story short, we originally planned to meet up with them at their house in Aspen, but they were away on the only dates we could do, but he offered his house in LA if we needed it. As it turned out we now did, so here we are!

The house was in a huge gated community, La Brea Park, built in the 1930s, in a sort of Art Deco style, it's a bit samey across the estate, but there is a lot of open grassy spaces and trees; it's considered safe and we noticed there were a lot of young families, so it seems people like it. Our friend's house has beautiful wood block floors, a very simple design and is quite comfortable.

We unpacked and crashed for a while, trying to relax after the journey and the traffic. A beer helped. Later we wandered up to the Farmer's Market, highly recommended, but in our opinion not a patch on Victoria Market in Melbourne. After looking around for a bit we settled on a Singaporean stall and ate their Chicken Rendang. Not a patch on the food we had tried in the East, but it was ok. Beers had to be bought from a pop-up bar nearby. We wandered around the Market area including The Grove, an upmarket shopping complex, the whole area was a buzzy place, lots going on, but not too crowded. Back to base and bed.



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