Journal begins: Los Angeles

I’ve been lucky enough to have travelled quite a bit this year, and every time I go somewhere, I always tell myself that I will keep a journal to remember all the things that I did.

But it never works.

I can’t remember very well what we did last winter when I went to Atlanta and Orlando. I think we spent 2 weeks traveling, but I only have about a week’s worth of memories. I have no idea what we did the other week.

During the spring, I spent a week touring with the choir, and we actually went to 3 different states. I don’t remember any of them except Michigan!! I don’t remember where we performed! I remember the venues, like churches and stuff, but nothing else. I can’t remember what state we were in!

I spent 3.5 weeks in London/Paris this summer, but I have even less memories from then. I remember various places we went, but surely we did more than that?

This fall, I was incredibly lucky to have gone to Indiana to be part of an Amish community. Thank goodness I did keep a journal. I know exactly what we did on what day (by consulting my journal / Word document).

This winter, I am going to keep a journal. I must!

I figure that instead of writing in another Word document again, or writing in a notebook which I dislike because I am paranoid that someone here will pick it up to read and think I’m being unnecessary, I will just write here instead.

Okay so updates:

December 21

Left Grinnell at 4am to take the 6am plane to Burbank, California. This is very ridiculous because the airport is 45 minutes away from my college, and 2 hours is a very dangerously short time to allow myself to get from my dorm room to my seat on the plane. All the while I thought I had a 10am flight, and it wasn’t till days after I reserved the taxi which was also two days before my departure that I realized my flight wasn’t at 10am.

Anyway, by the time I got to the airport, checked in my bags, went past security and arrived at the gate, it was EXACTLY boarding time. Phew! I cannot imagine the nagging I would get from my mom if I told her what happened.

Arrived in LA at 11am, when my friend came to pick me up. Spent most of the day catching up with my friend, had dinner with her family at a Thai restaurant.

December 22

Rested at home. Did nothing other than surf the web hohoho internet my love! Her parents tapau-ed Pakistani food for dinner. It looked and tasted a lot like thosai and rendang curry.

December 23

Went to Universal Studios Hollywood!

Universal Studios Hollywood

With my friend and her 12-year-old cousin sister.

To make things easier for myself and to simplify things for the future, I shall henceforth call my friend Lane.

We were later joined by Lane’s best friend from LA, but I don’t have a picture of her because I grew very tired of taking out and putting back my inconveniently big camera, so we used Lane’s Blackberry camera instead.

Universal Studios Hollywood does not have as much stuff as Universal Studios Florida. Only one theme park, less rides.

But it was fun nonetheless! We went on the Studio Tour, which is a 45-minute tour around the stages and studios of a lot of movies and TV series by Universal Studios.

I was an idiot during the first half of the tour because I was taking pictures in a MOVING TRAIN with a very slow shutter speed! I didn’t check and didn’t look properly at the photos I took so I had NO IDEA until halfway through! So I ended up with very blurry, extremely overexposed photos.

DAMN SAD! We went to the set for Desperate Housewives, yes the actual neighborhood that they use for the show! And the photos I had from this awesome experience all turned out like this —

Universal Studios Hollywood

I KNOW SO SAD!!!! I think that is Bree Hodge’s house, I don’t remember. Pay attention next time you watch Desperate Housewives and tell me okay?

After that, I realized my idiocy and had better pictures then. Look at this —

Universal Studios Hollywood

Guess what movie this set is for? There was also an entire plane broken into half with the top burned off and the interior exposed, seats and all. I didn’t get a picture of that because it was on the other side of the train and there were all these people’s heads blocking me.

Broken planes, burnt houses — War of the Worlds!

After that we went on a bunch of rides, blah blah blah.

And then, since it was two days before Christmas, we went to watch the Grinchmas play!

Universal Studios Hollywood

Basically the regular “In Whoville they say the Grinch’s small heart grew three sizes that day” kind of thing.

After all that, it was 9pm. We were picked up by Lane’s uncle, and we went to his house to stay the night.

I have a lot less photos from this Universal Studios Hollywood experience compared to when I went to the Universal Studios in Orlando last winter. I am less paranoid about needing to take as many photos as possible to “validate” my having been there.

In fact, I was incredibly annoyed by tourists taking flash photos every few minutes. Heck la, can you please turn off your flash?

December 24

Lane’s two cousins, both doctors(!), took us (me, Lane, Lane’s little cousin sister) out for dim sum.

It was quite decent, but none of the other stuff mattered as long as I could have loh mai gai and taufu fah!!!!

I thought I never could have taufu fah in a long time, so a week or two before I left Malaysia, I would always get taufu fah to eat every chance I get. I swear, I can never get enough of this amazing wonderful fantastic fabulous awesome superb…. beancurd.

LOL my friends from Grinnell thought I was crazy when I said my favorite dessert in Malaysia is a kind of beancurd. Some think tofu is tasteless and disgusting, others think tofu is only for savory dishes.


That’s that.

Will write more soon!

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