It’s the Little Things

It’s always the little things that make the difference. Like when you realize on the second morning of your trip that you packed everything but your laptop’s nonstandard power cord. So you spend your third very early morning in the lobby of your next hotel–which used to be the famed Riot House (see Almost Famous) and is now the Andaz–drinking coffee, pecking out your blog letter by letter on your phone, listening to SZA (who is it!) and enjoying the chilly sunny start of the day when suddenly you notice that a woman, who clearly did not plan to wake up at this hotel on this particular cold snap morning, is screaming at the front desk clerk that she wants her car back BECAUSE SHE IS NOT STAYING HERE AND NOT PAYING TO GET HER CAR BACK THAT THE HOTEL IS HOLDING HOSTAGE! SHE HAS TO GO TO WORK!!! WHY ARE THEY HOLDING IT HOSTAGE?!? WHY?!? YEAH LET’S GO OUTSIDE!!!! Oh, Hollywood, the big picture may look different, but the little things rarely do.

Anyway, back to yesterday!

We spent our second Disney morning at California Adventure–what we all agreed was kinda the Disney-MGM Studios, I mean Hollywood Studios of the West. In other words, amazing visual concept that someone pitched without thinking about what people would actually DO there. Lucky for us, we (read Harper and Penn) were really at this park for one ride–the Guardians of the Galaxy rebranded Tower of Terror. So we happily wandered through the unreal streets of California’s imagined past.

We were surrounded by the beauty, power, and emotion of Disney’s animated past and the likely disappointment of its Wrinkle in Time future (we so want this to be good but … yipes! every preview looks worse than the one before).

While the kids fell and rose repeatedly to their stomach-churning joy, Ned and I shrunk to Bug’s Life-size, where the rides were more my speed (sloooow) and the world-creation was utterly charming and clever.

After a too long wait for our lunch reservation and a “discussion” with the Cathay restaurant staff, we wound up with an extraordinary server from Madison, Wisconsin, and too much delicious food–sriracha duck wings, chipotle fried biscuits, a massive cheeseburger, endive salad, a Cuban-style roast pork crepe, and more–savored over memories of vacations past in a very lovely old Hollywood setting …

but we missed our Soarin’ FP, which we all agreed we were probably too full to ride anyway.

As the day grew chillier, we bid adieu to Disney with thanks for the slow roll day of fun.

We drove 10 min up the highway to an outlet mall in search of some Nikes (Penn), Pac Sun (Harper), and Old Navy (me). We found all, plus a Vans skatepark. Dude! Given our goal was to leave with buying stuff not breaking bones, we stayed on the sidelines and did our damage via cash not crash.

We attempted, unsuccessfully, to find a replacement cord for my ASUS Zenbook, which left us far-less-than-Zen. Then, we hit the road for WeHo (West Hollywood) and our new home, the aforementioned Andaz. We got there late, but here’s a bunch of all times of day photos to give you a sense of the vibe.  Throughout our stay, the hotel proved to be a perfect resting spot in a great location with comfy beds, roomy rooms, and friendly staff.

After checking in, we took our new hot kicks up Sunset to Carney’s for some late night tacos, hot dogs, burgers, and fries in a railway car–with an uncredited and sadly unphotographed appearance by TV’sAlexFernandez.

With a kiss goodnight, we were already loving LA!

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