I have always dreamed about living in Los Angeles. I had given up my dream and decided to settle with living in NY/NJ. Until one faithful President’s weekend when I went to LA on a whim and never looked back. I was moving. Crazy as it seemed to everyone nothing was going to stop me.
And 6 months later, I moved across country not knowing a soul. Looking back, I am amazed by my courage. I never have been like that before or again. Sometimes you have to just go for it.
Ten years of living in this city has taught me a thing or two.
“Traffic is terrible in LA” – Fact. Directions are never measured by the miles to the destination but by the time you leave which will determine the amount of traffic you hit.
Rush Hour is not an hour, or even two hours. It’s HOURS. Generally, from 2:30-8pm with the peak of traffic between 4:30pm-7:00pm. Always try to leave before peak traffic hours or you will spend HOURS in traffic for a drive that should take 30 minutes.
There are pockets of neighborhoods. Once you’re in yours you never leave because traffic is so bad. If you leave your neighborhood, it better be for something good, or time the traffic right so you aren’t stuck for hours. This was one of fears when we moved to the valley. I learned, you and others will travel for good friends, good food, good drinks, good parties, etc. You are not trapped by your neighborhood.
There may not be a snow season, but there is a fire season. Summer is dry, it barely rains, creating the perfect breeding ground for the fire season. It seems without fail, every Fall, the fires begin some are worse than others but every year they happen. This was the first year we experienced the fires first hand. I am hoping we won’t come that close to the fires for a long time.
Temperature ranges vary from 10-30 degrees depending on where you are within the same city. On any given summer day, the valley (where we currently live) it could be 100º, Culver City/Mid City (where we used to live) could be 80° and the beach areas could be 70°. You really need to pay attention to the weather and were you are going to be that day to dress accordingly.
You take vacations to snow. I grew up in the Northeast, so every winter was more snow than I ever wanted to see ever again. That was until I moved Los Angeles and had children. Now, it’s our goal to take them to the snow once a winter. I never thought I would see the day that a vacation to the snow was a VACATION, but here we are. . .
Parking is so awful you would rather Uber, than ever deal with looking for parking. Valet or street parking, Uber is the way to go.
The beach may only be 10 minutes from your house, but you will rarely ever go. When I first moved here I did go to the beach often but that soon ended. Between the traffic there, parking, and the cooler beach temps it’s not as desirable to go as you would think. If we go 2-3 times over the summer now, it’s a miracle.
You lose your NY edge. I did in less than a year of living here. I never thought I would lose my edge but the longer I have been here the softer I am becoming. There is something about the lack of seasons that softens everyone.
There are 63638 freeways. Take the 118 to the 170 to the 5 to the 101. If you followed that, you are a local! The first time I was able to follow the freeway road map in a conversation I could not have been prouder and excited.
** Bonus ** Everyone comes here with an idea and a dream. “They” say no one is born here, except my husband and now my children. I came here for the weather. Many come here for the industry. Many come, most leave, few make it here, and even fewer make this place a home.
Ten years of living in this crazy place. Yes, LA is very different from most places I have ever lived but I would not have it any other way. I love this place and all its quirks, from the celebrity sightings, to the gorgeous views to the beaches. This place is home.
What’s the craziest thing where you live? Does it compare to LA? Comment below I would love to hear from you.