The adventure has begun! I left Vancouver this morning after a great visit with my sisters friend Pam (you’re the best Pam!). I haven’t been to Vancouver since I was 15, so I was seeing the city with a fresh perspective. Vancouver is great! From what I saw, the downtown is a little glitzy with lights and fashion, but it’s clean and not as chaotic as Toronto. There seemed to be a lot of organic food shops and yoga studios, so it seems like the people here are pretty health conscious. The scenery was also amazing. There are mountains and the ocean — hello! What’s not to like?! You may answer with “rain,” but it wasn’t raining when I was there.
I am currently in LAX. First of all, it is a balmy 17 degrees, and when I got here I just sat happily outside on a bench and enjoyed the beautiful breeze. I was in Ottawa only a week ago where it was a solid -25; so needless to say, I love my life.
This is my first time in California, and even though I won’t get to do any sightseeing, I feel like I got a little taste of the culture from the view from the plane. The first thing I really noticed was the ocean and the beach. After that it felt like
we were flying over the most intense game of monopoly ever. LA is HUGE! Houses are lined up side by side, street after street, for as far as I could see. There were also tons of different sports stadiums — football, soccer, baseball, and tennis courts. Once we got closer to the ground you could see little patches of green grass acting as people’s lawns, and there are a lot of pools.
I was fascinated because from the sky, the view is a direct reflection of America — power in numbers, wealth, and entertainment. I took a class in third year called “The Culture of Containment: Post Cold War America,” and my teacher was obsessed with how consumerism acted (or acts) as a container for America. It was interesting because from the view from the sky, everything does look perfectly contained in LA. Each subdivision seemed to have a block of maybe 16 houses, and each house had a perfect square lot with a perfect square lawn. My prof used to talk about how Americans would demonstrate their wealth and power through their lawns and houses, so from an outside view, they would look wealthy (AKA, conspicuous consumption.) The other thing I found really interesting was the amount of stadiums. American’s are definitely into their sports and entertainment.
I know that this view isn’t a direct reflection of LA or California in general — once you get up close I’m sure you’d see poverty as well as wealth. I just find it fascinating that from the sky all it looks like is wealth, power, and masses of people. The airport is also huge. I had to take a five-minute shuttle ride through runways and whatnot from one terminal to the next during my layover. Pretty cool stuff.
Now I’m waiting for the big time flight. It should take about 12 hours from here to Brisbane. Wish me luck!