Thursday, 17 July / 11:00 AM – Los Angeles, USA
Here I am, sitting on the plane and thinking as we got closer to LAX.
Why do I love LA?
This was my third trip to LA in the past 11 months. But this time around I went to San Francisco first because I have never been there.
Actually, let’s skip talking about San Francisco. I didn’t really like it that much. And after 2 days I just wanted to leave. So I cut my trip short, changed my flight and headed straight to LA.
Again, Why do I love LA?
I recalled my first trip and what went through my head on my way there.
She has been there last March. Over one year ago.
Since that day, I dreaded the thought of visiting that place. Scared of what might remind me of her.
Until I decided to trace the same path.
That’s when I summed up the drive to visit LA for the first time. It was one of those “confront your own demons” moments that every one of us has to go through from time to time. Some more than others.
I land in LA, for the third time. And go straight to my hotel in West Hollywood on Beverly Boulevard. Throw my bags into my room and step outside. It’s 4 pm. And I feel the afternoon sun on my face.
Some people are waiting in line in front of CBS studios. I wonder why. Who cares. They look good.
I’m feeling very happy…
And I want the ability to get into this state anytime..at will. So I think to myself…why?
Why do I feel so happy?
Well..Have you ever had the experience of going to a city and getting excited before heading there?
Thinking about it and imagining what you will do once you get there?
Then you get even more excited during the trip. While you are packing, going to the airport, hopping on the plane and daydreaming during the flight about the things you will do there?
But when you actually get there, you feel like “Now What??”
You don’t feel excited anymore. The excitement was in the journey itself, and in the anticipation. Not in the destination.
This did not happen when I landed for the first time in LA.
It did not happen the second time…
Didn’t happen the third time either.
It just never happened.
What happened instead was…I was hit suddenly by multiple sensations…All at once.
That smell of AC mixed air when I stepped into the airport. Sent me back in time to places in the Middle East..in India. That same smell used to hit me in those places. And now I feel like the kid that I was when I was there. My inner child is suddenly wide awake inside me and feeling the same way that he did back then. So many years ago.
I’m still walking outside…heading towards the sun…
That amazing feeling that comes from the warmth of the clear cloudless skies..
The endless spread of palm trees.
The hills filled with houses that light up like lanterns throughout the night.
Walking up from the beach to the boardwalks and grabbing iced drinks.
Bonfires on the beach.
Happiness radiating from within.
The birthplace of my favorite bands as I was growing up…
It all happened here. And it looks exactly how I imagined it to be…
A childhood regression emerges.
Getting bombarded with all these emotions reminds me of a time when I was still in school when I wondered how it would’ve been like growing up here. Things would’ve turned out different…
As the sun sets in, I comfort in the knowledge of what adventures the night may bring.
I don’t need to plan anything ahead, all that I need is to pick a starting point. And see where that may lead to.
And knowing that someone I cared about in the past might also be here tonight, and maybe, just maybe, going through the same feelings of joy.
I think of my favorite song…and at that precise moment, I hear it playing on the radio.
What are the odds? I didn’t ask for this. It just happened…at the right moment.
And this time I wish that someone else, who did not come with me on this trip, is here. Just to share this.
A nostalgic aura creeps into my body and a momentary feeling of sadness emerges, tries to pull me down, but it doesn’t work, and it actually feels good, that little sadness. I’m still happy.
I get her a postcard instead.
I will write something later.
I continue walking.
The late afternoon sun hits my face. It feels warm.
That’s why I love LA.