Well, folks! I am back from my roadtrip to Los Angeles. It took a total of 1200 miles, 25 hours, and hundreds of songs to get there. Thanks to my awesome friend, Chrissy, for accompanying me on this trip. I owe her BIG time. I had two main missions on this trip: 1) go the the Ellen Degeneres show, and more importantly 2) visit Mike at USC.
I feel like this is a good time to explain more about this Mike fellow and how he came to be an important part of my life. Things are about to get personal.
Mike and I met in high school and got to know each other during our senior year in AP Physics class. I know, we’re nerds. And we’re proud of it. One thing led to another and here we are, 3 years later, still together and loving every minute of it. Chrissy, a fellow nerd, was also in our physics class and we all became pals.
But the story gets a little more complicated. His family moved away from Washington after we finished high school and he goes to school in LA while I’m still here in Seattle. What does this mean? It means weekly Skype dates, long phone calls, care packages filled with baked goods, love letters, and sparse visits.
Long-distance relationships definitely have their cons: not seeing/spending time with each other (obviously), loneliness, the emotional rollercoaster after visits (maybe that’s just me). We’ve seen each other seven times since June of 2009! But the pros outweigh the cons if the person is right. I learned to be independent and to develop the communication in our relationship. The excitement building up to each visit and Skype date never ever gets old. And I was SO excited to see him! :)
Every single time we see each other we always have so much fun. Usually, he is the one that makes trips up to Seattle. But this time I went down there. I finally got to meet his friends that I’ve met and talked to through Skype the past two years. They were all so nice and fun to be around. While Mike was in class or doing homework, I busied myself by making the apartment Nutella cookies and maple snickerdoodles (recipe here). A total of 3 batches and they were gone the day after I made each of them!
It was fun to walk around the school and go to the restaurants and places that I’ve heard so much about. We went to the San Fernando Valley where Mike lived before he moved to Washington. He showed me his old house and schools and ate at Allesio’s, his favorite Italian restaurant. It was sooo delicious, but they were out of his favorite dessert: Strawberry Florentine. I’ll guess we’ll just have to make another trip!
We went to the Grove, which is an adult version of Disneyland; expensive stores and a trolley running through the main street. Also, Hollywood is not as glamorous as you think. We went there to go to Build-a-Bear to get a stuffed animal that we will be passing off to each other every time we see each other. Did I mention we’re cheesy? We’re cheesy.
One of the biggest highlights of my trip was going to the Ellen Degeneres Show! There was lots of dancing and we ended up on national television for a few seconds. It’s even on YouTube. Yup, we’re practically famous.
After the Ellen Show, we went to Santa Monica for dinner. After we walked around for a bit and got some fish & chips on the boardwalk, Chrissy and Mike suggested that we should go swimming. I thought they were joking. But nope, they were not. We were fully clothed and played in the water for a bit until the waves sneaked up on us and eventually drenched us. Since we were already soaked, why not just go swimming!
On my last day in LA, we made steak fajitas for the guys in the apartment. Mike whipped out his grill and Chrissy worked her magic in the kitchen. Then, we went to the Griffith Observatory. It’s this incredible building with telescopes sitting on top of a hill overlooking LA. It was absolutely beautiful, romantic, and a perfect end to the best visit yet.
It was difficult to say goodbye. It always is. But I look forward to the next visit, because somehow they just get better and better. Although we don’t see each other very often, I feel like I know this guy so well and I can honestly say he is my best friend.
Mike has always been trying to convince me that LA is awesome. I’m a Pacific Northwest girl who hates temperatures over 80 degrees. But he definitely has me convinced this time (although I can do without the smog).
See you later, Los Angeles! See you soon on Skype, Mike!