Southern California Enthusiast

by Sarah Paciocco

I’m in love.

It’s a kind of love that’s grown slowly over time—starting when I was twelve years old and nearly a decade later; this love is still growing stronger. You could call what I have an obsession. It’s irrational and all consuming. Always sunny, always got something going on… spontaneous, even. If I must reveal the identity of my love… it’s name is Los Angeles.

This love started when my family and I moved to the city of Woodland Hills (a mere 30 minutes outside of the City of Angels) on January 1, 2005. Coming from West Palm Beach, Florida, Los Angeles was a lot to take in all at once. I was so hung up on the friends I had left behind, that I neglected to realize the beauty that lay right in front of me. To make it even worse, LA was experiencing some of the worst rainstorms I had ever seen. It was a less than ideal welcome.

As time passed, the rain stopped and I began adjusting to my new life. Always up for an adventure, my family and I traveled from our home in the San Fernando Valley to the city of Los Angeles every single weekend, eager to explore our new surroundings.

Now, almost ten years later, I know L.A. like the back of my hand. Whether I’m sitting in 2 hours of traffic on Thursday morning to get to my internship in West Hollywood or speeding down the 101 on a Saturday evening after a concert at the Roxy, I love it all. Yeah, you read that right. I’m fully aware that I have the unpopular opinion—the infamous LA traffic doesn’t bother me. In fact, I often enjoy it.

Thanks to LA’s ever-present ability to entertain, I have access to hundreds upon thousands of places and things to see. Of all things LA has to offer, these activities reign supreme: hiking to the Hollywood sign, looking for the greatest steals at Amoeba Records, admiring the amazing views from Griffith Observatory, catching a movie at the ArcLight, brunching at Urth Caffe, and lastly, simultaneously shopping and celeb-spotting at Melrose Trading Post. With so much to offer, how could I NOT love this city?

Despite my passionate love affair with LA, I often have some reservations. I constantly worry that I’m in too deep. Because of its high entertainment value, I feel as if I have a new expectation for all other places I travel to.  In terms of living, I know that I will eventually settle down in a place that keeps me in close proximity to the city that I love.

So, in conclusion: Curse you, Los Angeles. Thanks to you, I have the highest expectations for any and every place I visit in the future. Curse you, indeed. 

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