Day 1 – What’s the time in LA?

I arrive at LAX, a bit dazed and confused. I started my travels at 3.30am, arrived at Guangzhou at 7am. I missed a night’s sleep entirely. The sun was up, and I had a 5 hour layover until my next flight. I wish I had pliers to keep my eyes open while waiting. I was so nervous I would fall asleep, I decided to set an alarm just in case. I did fall asleep, and my alarm was set for the wrong time zone but thankfully Bangkok is behind an hour, so I just woke up two hours before boarding instead of one  All in all, I got a 2 hour nap so far.

Finally I got to board the flight to LAX departing from Guangzhou at noon. YAY, time to sleep! … Except my neighbor (who was also Thai) started chatting to me about the downfall of Thailand. Don’t get me wrong, normally I would be very interested and probably have a lot to add to this conversation. But bro… wrong timing. And he wouldn’t stop talking. I stopped responding over an hour ago and he was still complaining away. I seriously started to question if he picked up any social queues I tried to send his way. I guess not… So I eventually gave up and decided it was time for the headphones. That’s the biggest social queue, and last tactic I had  my sleeve to getting a good night’s rest (the airplane version). So this worked. He stopped talking… But then he also started snoring. It was loud, and almost shook the entire plane. I could hear the vibrations and sound of his snore through my headphones. No, this is not an exaggeration.

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So with another 2 hour nap I managed to take, I arrived at LAX, only to be greeted by an extremely flirtatious passport control officer. I played along because I was nervous if I didn’t, I wouldn’t get the entry stamp. What a silly fear, but I’ve been through hell and back with USA homeland security. They are not to be messed with. If they flirt with you, flirt back!

My flight was scheduled to land an 10.40am. I guess it was around 10.20am when the flight landed and I was out of the airport by 12.00pm and waiting for the free shuttle to take me to my motel. Sleep was yelling my name. I arrived at the motel at 12.30pm, only to hear the receptionist say “You are too early. Go out somewhere and come back at 1pm.” Huh? I’m only 30 minutes early, surely I could wait. I decided to recheck the time with her. “It’s 10.45am, you too early.” she sounded irritated, and the Chinese in her English became more apparent. Also, 10.45? How? What time did my flight land? It was 2 hours early? Weird. Oh crap. I really did have a lot of time to kill. Usually I would rejoice at a 2 hour time increase in my day, especially if I’m in a new city, but no, I wanted sleep and clearly I would have to wait aimlessly for 2 additional hours to get it. The lady didn’t seem to want me to wait at the motel lobby, so I stored my luggage and left.

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I decided I might as well see Venice beach now instead of later, since I had the time and it was really the only thing I wanted to see in LA. My friends had warned me that LA is an ugly city, and that no traveler usually likes LA. They were right. The city was flat to me, minus the oddities that were happening on Venice beach. It was entertainment to say the least. People were conducting medical marijuana evaluations, doing free spirit healings, and other hippy stuff. Adding to this was some guidos (the Spanish kind) walking around topless and flexing their muscles.

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If I wasn’t so tired I would have stayed longer. The entire concept of Venice beach and the boardwalk was a strange experience. I didn’t quite know what to make of this place. It was 2.30pm, (now I’m sure the time’s right) which means it’s 4.30am Thai time. I decided to go back to the motel, check in and call it a day (night?). I woke up 15 hours later, at 6am. So here I am writing this, and quickly realizing that I need to start getting organized and ready for my next set of flights from LA to Miami, where I will meet up with Krista (my awesome travel buddy), and we’ll fly into La Paz tof ether from there.

I wonder what time it is in Miami… And La Paz. Why am I so disoriented?!

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