Where has this summer gone? I have three more weeks to spend at THR, and I’m beginning to dread the end. This summer has truly been one of the most memorable summers I’ve ever had. I have learned more about the industry I’m interested in writing about for the rest of my life, I have gotten to work with some of the greatest people, I have traveled around the country, I have crossed items off of my bucket list and I’ve gotten to do all of this while pursuing my dreams. I’m lucky, I’m blessed and I’m thrilled.
Since I last wrote, I’ve had the opportunity to see more of Los Angeles, as well as more of California in general. Olivia and I hiked to the old LA Zoo and then headed to the other side of the park for the Griffith Observatory. As amazing as the view is from the top of the Observatory, it still is a bit depressing to look out over the city and see buildings obscured by smog. I got to cover a panel for THR at the LA Film Fest where I got to listen to Olivia Munn, Demian Bichir, Alfred Molina and Abigail Spencer talk about their past and thoughts on the film industry.
Saba’s 23rd birthday happened, so I actually went out to a bar to help her celebrate that special day, which is something I can’t say I do often. Olivia went with me, and after locking ourselves out of her apartment, we had a nice little time trying to figure out a plan of action. Needless to say, it all worked out, and we headed to the beach the next morning where I got to take my first step in the Pacific Ocean. Now I can say I have been coast to coast.
Saba was covering the El Cap’s Throwback Thursday event where they were showing The Little Mermaid, and she invited me to join her. I don’t have the words to express how adorable that whole experience was. My favorite part was seeing the cutest little Prince Eric among all of the little girls dressed up like Ariel. The El Cap theater itself is an absolutely magical venue, and I wish I was going to be here for the August tbt date.
Rikkel and I have had the chance to go on some adventures since she arrived in LA. She’s been a doll to drive around with my carless self. I can’t thank her enough for the touristy things she’s been willing to do. We hiked Fryman Canyon Park, visited the Hollywood Lake area and I finally got myself a photo (or four) with the Hollywood sign. We also did the WB Studio Tour, which I have to say was absolutely fantastic. Having done the WB Studio Tour in London — which is purely Harry Potter themed — I was ready to see the beloved sets of Gilmore Girls, Friends and everything else that’s filmed there. The small Harry Potter collection was fine with me, even though the Sorting Hat there put me in Slytherin (WRONG. I’m clearly Ravenclaw). The best part was the Central Perk set, but the Batman collection was utterly amazing. We spent the Fourth at Marina del Rey walking around Fisherman’s Village and hanging out on the water. This adorable 18-month-old befriended me while we were waiting for the fireworks, and she was the cutest little thing. It wan’t the type of Fourth I spend with my family in the mountains, but it was nice. And yes, we did say Marina del Rey exactly like the Californians SNL sketch all day.
Now, my semester in London last year was the greatest time of my life. I was living in my favorite city, and I made some lovely friends, so leaving was hard. Since that journey, I hadn’t been able to see any of the friends I had made there, so when I learned that I was coming out to California for the summer, I had to schedule a day to see Heather, my former flatmate, travel buddy and bestie. She lives in Carlsbad, so I hopped on the Amtrak and took it to Oceanside. She then took me to visit La Jolla, San Diego, Coronado Island and some places in between. Hanging out in her backyard next to the fire pit with her parents was such a calming way to end the day, and I honestly didn’t want to leave. It was so marvelous to be reunited and to catch up about the last year. Lord knows the both of us are dying to head back to London as soon as humanly possible, and I am going to bet that we do.
And to wrap up this catch-up session, I have to talk about my first Hollywood Bowl experience. Last night I went to see DreamWorks celebrate 20 years with Jack Black as the host, performances by Judith Hill (of my favorite DreamWorks movie, The Prince of Egypt) and appearances by Alan Silvestri, Alexandre Desplat (my favorite), Danny Elfman, Steven Schwartz and others. It was absolutely thrilling to be in this historic venue — in seats I never would have dreamed of sitting in — drinking wine, eating snacks and listening to a great musical show. I am so thankful to have been able to attend the event last night. I won’t soon forget these experiences.
Now, I’m the type of person who has to schedule things weeks in advance and have my planner constantly at my side. My planner already has the days marked with no school for the whole year, as well as OU’s commencement date. I really don’t mess around with planning. I like to know my next step before I take it…literally. When I’m walking, I have a bad habit of staring at the ground in front of me. You’d think that with the way things tend to happen in life it’d be easier to deal with not knowing things, but it’s not. It hasn’t gotten any easier, and this summer has been a good example of how surprising and surreal life can be. I’m learning to accept the fact that I can’t predict everything and am going to have to deal with not knowing. As that (hopefully) gets easier, I’m still going to be scheduling what I can. This means that my road trip back home and the two weeks it’ll take me to get back to school are already pre-scheduled. As for the rest of my California list? Granted, I have things planned that aren’t on the list, but some of those things are already set. So here’s to the next three weeks. I hope they go swimmingly.
Go to Disneyland (July 26)
Visit San Diego
Get a picture with the Hollywood sign
See a performance at the Hollywood BowlGo to an LA Galaxy game (maybe Wednesday)
See a movie in a cemetery
Try In N Out
Visit The Last Bookstore
Go to the Griffith ObservatoryHike in Runyon Canyon
Tour WB Studios