Image courtesy of New York Natives, photographer: Anna Brooks Image courtesy of New York Natives, photographer: Anna Brooks
By Anna Brooks

The first trip to LA is exciting, no matter where you are from. There is an indescribable vibe that is particular to the city. I’m not sure if it’s the warm weather, the palm trees everywhere, or the fact that everyone looks like they are dressing out of a chic and trendy fashion magazine, but everything in LA feels more relaxed.

Maybe that’s because I’m from New York — a city with constant stimulation — or maybe LA is really just a town that moves slower than other cities; whatever the reason, I found myself mesmerized by the place.

I had a pretty stereotypical first trip to the West Coast. Well, it wasn’t exactly my first, since I don’t consider my 7th grade trip to San Francisco the typical ‘West Coast’ experience, because I went in November, and it was cold and rainy every day. THIS was the first time that I would truly be experiencing the California lifestyle. And boy, did I have a cliché of a first trip.

My family started out the vacation by renting a red Mini Cooper at the airport to drive around during our stay. We actualy drove on the freeway from LAX into Los Angeles with “Teenage Dream” playing on the radio, the warm sun beating down on us, and the wind whipping in our hair. It was pretty great.

We spent our time in LA being tourists, but, as we told ourselves, not tacky ‘Walk of Fame’ tourists; cool Urth Café tourists. We ate dinner at The Ivy, drove through Bel Air, and even had a quick stop at the Hollywood sign. It was everything I could have wanted in a first trip (minus the fact that our only celebrity spotting was Sharon Stone, who I wouldn’t have even recognized if my dad hadn’t pointed her out.) Nonetheless, it was an unforgettable introduction to LA.

What makes LA such a magical place? I mean, why does this city fascinate me so much? I come from NYC…the place with the most hustle and bustle and non-stop energy in the world. Why should another city captivate me like this? I’ve been to Paris, London, Boston, Philadelphia, and Washington DC, and I thought that they were great, but not the way that I think LA is great. I mean, even the homeless people in LA look like they have a fashion sense. The conclusion that I’ve come to is that LA is such a great city because it is able to have a nonchalant attitude in the atmosphere of a city. What I mean is, everything seems a little bit calmer and more relaxed, while still being able to capture all of the excitement that is a city.

I’m sure this magic will wear off eventually, as I can tell from the exasperated sighs my parents give when they’re called to do business out there. But for right now, LA has a special place in my heart as being a nice spot to unwind from New York.

Although I was a little disappointed when I got back to feel the humid air instead of the nice dry heat I was getting used to, deep down I was happy to be back in New York. After all, every city will be a second to my hometown. 

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