Our second day in Los Angeles was filled with more traffic, as we set out towards to Ontario Outlet Mall. I honestly think everyone in the Los Angeles area and the surrounding vicinity must have woken up on Sunday morning and said – Wouldn’t be a fabulous idea to go out to the Ontario Factory Outlet Mall to do a bit of school clothes shopping? The place was packed, and I was fit to be tied. I hate shopping, I truly do. I would rather have hair pulled strand by strand from my scalp than have to go into a mall. My boys and my husband found everything they needed before I completely lost my mind and started flailing at people that got in my way.
Then back into more traffic. Thing is, when I looked at the face of the drivers in the other cars, nobody seemed to be the least bit put out by the fact that travelling a matter of one mile could take up to 20 minutes. I’m the only one that seemed bothered by it.
We had planned to go to high tea, but that fell apart because the person planning this entire trip didn’t bother to check and see if high tea was served daily(umm, that would me). I did discover The Hotel Bel-Air put on a high tea, but I wasn’t willing to spend the $60 a person, nor did I think they would be thrilled to let a scruffy person like myself into such a fancy place.
We did, however, go to Rodeo Drive. On the way there, while surprisingly stuck in traffic (again), we watched a most interesting man wandering through the gridlock, talking, carrying on and waving some kind of sign upside down. Nobody was even slightly taken aback by this demonstration of insanity or drug impairment, as they sat in their Bentleys, Mercedes, BMWs and other high-end not made in America cars. The thing that boggled my mind the most, was that less than a block away was one of the most exclusive shopping centers in the United States. The contrast between this poor gesticulating man and what we drove up to less than 10 minutes later was quite unsettling.
The boys were rather intimidated by the stores on Rodeo drive and absolutely refused to go into any of the shops. I finally convinced my oldest to go into Louis Vuitton where we struck up a most interesting conversation with one of the ladies that worked in the store. I basically told her I couldn’t afford a thing in the store, not even a pair of socks or a handkerchief, which I am sure she had already figured out. But funnily enough, that statement of honesty seemed to break the ice and she told us tales of billionaires coming in and plunking down $50,000 for their “girlfriends”. She also showed us the $147,000 punching bag in the signature dark brown leather with LVs all over it. Why would anyone want to spend that kind of money on something just so they could beat the crap out of it? Money is a funny thing. Most of us are so broke we don’t have a pot to piss in, while the rich are searching for ways to piss all their money away. Go figure.
Because our high tea plans disintegrated around us we had to come up with something else to do. I decided I really wanted to go see the La Brea Tar Pits. This is a most fascinating place right on Wilshire Boulevard. It is an active excavation site where they have uncovered prehistoric fossils such as Sabre Tooth Tigers, Dire Wolves and Mammoths. There are multiple tar pits, with little bubbles forming on the surface, shimmering in the sun and then bursting. It’s crazy that this type of thing can be found smack dab in the middle of Los Angeles. It makes you wonder what else is bubbling under the surface. As we were leaving my husband cheerfully advised me, the La Brea tar pits are predicted to be at the epicenter of the next big earthquake. I think to myself – Now he tells me.
The day was filled with stark contrasts and interesting photo opportunities. In the elevator on our way up to our hotel room we met three middle-aged men who were conversing in French. It’s a lovely language to listen to. I figured they were business men, or tourists on holiday in Los Angeles to visit the sights. The next morning much to my surprise, those same men , along with a large number of other French speaking individuals, were totally outfitted in motorcycle gang get-ups, preparing to leave on their Harleys. It was a puzzling sight, as are many of the sights in Los Angeles.