How to explore your hometown like a tourist

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Lately, I’ve been restless. My schedule has been uncharacteristically consistent, and, while that’s good for my productivity, my health, and my personal relationships, I’m beginning to feel antsy…when will the next trip come? When will I break from my day-in-day-out work/life routine?

When will I see something new again—something that challenges my boundaries, and refreshes my perspective?

The answer is as close as Google flights, but instead of turning to the airport, I’ve turned to my own hometown for a little adventure. Call it a “stay-cation” if you want. I took a trip for the few days off I had for Christmas, and explored my familiar surroundings with fresh eyes.

Continue reading “How to explore your hometown like a tourist”

Not so faraway places: Palos Verdes, CA

 

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Terranea Resort.

Just over a year ago, I moved back to my hometown of Palos Verdes, CA, after almost ten years of a journey that I never expected to end where it started.

Returning to California, I’ve found that I haven’t rediscovered my home so much as discovered it for the first time. As a child, I could not see the gorgeous purple bloom of bougainvillea, the drama of high yellow cliffs over the surf, or the wide, blazing sunsets. I did not marvel at the rolling hills and rocky outcrops of my hometown, or explore coves and winding trails. I wanted to go to the pool, the mall, the movies. But now, I look at where I was born and raised as a frontier in and of itself: a destination just as much as any of the cities or countries I have lived in before. Continue reading “Not so faraway places: Palos Verdes, CA”

Not so faraway places: Palos Verdes, CA

 

IMG_0999.JPG
Terranea Resort.

Just over a year ago, I moved back to my hometown of Palos Verdes, CA, after almost ten years of a journey that I never expected to end where it started.

Returning to California, I’ve found that I haven’t rediscovered my home so much as discovered it for the first time. As a child, I could not see the gorgeous purple bloom of bougainvillea, the drama of high yellow cliffs over the surf, or the wide, blazing sunsets. I did not marvel at the rolling hills and rocky outcrops of my hometown, or explore coves and winding trails. I wanted to go to the pool, the mall, the movies. But now, I look at where I was born and raised as a frontier in and of itself: a destination just as much as any of the cities or countries I have lived in before. Continue reading “Not so faraway places: Palos Verdes, CA”

A perfect 24 hours on Catalina Island

You may have never heard of Catalina Island before, but at one time this 22-mile long island off the coast of LA was a major destination for celebrities like Charlie Chaplin, Clark Gable and later on, Marilyn Monroe (think the Great Gatsby, West Coast style). The first and only time I’ve seen any national recognition of this Southern California getaway was on a Growing Pains episode in the 90’s, that was supposed to take place in Southern Europe. There it was- right behind Kirk Cameron, the ubiquitous sea foam- green railing of the waterside walkway and the arched facade of the famous Casino built in the 20’s- it wasn’t Malaga or Nice I was seeing, it was Southern California. And that’s when I realized I had always taken for granted this coastal gem, only a (sometimes rocky) forty-five minute boat ride from Long Beach.

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Continue reading “A perfect 24 hours on Catalina Island”

A perfect 24 hours on Catalina Island

You may have never heard of Catalina Island before, but at one time this 22-mile long island off the coast of LA was a major destination for celebrities like Charlie Chaplin, Clark Gable and later on, Marilyn Monroe (think the Great Gatsby, West Coast style). The first and only time I’ve seen any national recognition of this Southern California getaway was on a Growing Pains episode in the 90’s, that was supposed to take place in Southern Europe. There it was- right behind Kirk Cameron, the ubiquitous sea foam- green railing of the waterside walkway and the arched facade of the famous Casino built in the 20’s- it wasn’t Malaga or Nice I was seeing, it was Southern California. And that’s when I realized I had always taken for granted this coastal gem, only a (sometimes rocky) forty-five minute boat ride from Long Beach.

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Continue reading “A perfect 24 hours on Catalina Island”

From the dark continent to the golden state

 

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It’s been just over three months since I left Mozambique to come back to sunny Los Angeles. If you haven’t heard of it, Mozambique is at the very bottom of Africa, bordering South Africa and some other countries you might not have heard of starting with “Z”- Zimbabwe, Zambia…And if you haven’t heard of LA, it’s the metropolis at the bottom of California with a population equaling that of the country of Denmark.

LA county is where I was born and raised, but haven’t called home in a long time (nine years this September). But it’s home again for right now, and it feels good. It feels good to wear a tank top in February. And it feels good to get on the freeway and know it’s going to take me where I want to go, even if it takes two hours longer than it should. It feels good to have fifteen different options for an iced coffee drink. It feels the best to see the ocean every single day and watch people braver than I am take it on on their surfboards in mid-winter (trust me, the water here is always cold). Continue reading “From the dark continent to the golden state”