So I wouldn’t go for as to say that I’m “settled” in California, since half of my car has yet to be unpacked, and I’m currently living out of bags and boxes in the living room of a friends apartment. But I have had a few days to get accustomed to things here and catch up on my sleep. So now that I’ve successfully driven to LA, I’ll finish up the post about my drive.
When we left Grand Junction, CO, the coolest part of the trip started. The desert in Utah was incredibly scenic. The speed limit was pretty consistently 75 mph, and the enormous red rocks were awesome. There were a whole lot of scenic viewing areas where you could get out of your car and look around, and I wanted to stop at every single one of them. Unfortunately, we were meeting up with a friend in Vegas, and the hotel was in my name, so we had to be careful with our time.
We did get off of 15 South to drive to Moab, but once we got there, we decided not to pay to get into Arches National Park (due to time constraints). We drove back up to 15 and continued on our way. We did end up driving through Zion National Park though. That was pretty cool, and I got a lot of good pictures.
When we left Zion, we decided we needed to start making better time, so our stops were less frequent. The sun started to set about 40 miles from Vegas, and seeing the city lights from the desert was very cool.
The hotel that we stayed in (Las Vegas Marriott Residence Inn South) was pretty nice, and wasn’t too far from the main strip. We ate way too much pizza, shotgunned beers, and took the Marriott shuttle to MGM Grand.
I’ve said before that I’m not crazy about gambling, but checking out the MGM Grand Casino was pretty cool… For about half an hour. After I finished savoring every last golden drop of my $11 Bud Light bottle, we decided to get out of there and go explore. This was a good decision.
There are convenience stores on the strip that sell pounders (big cans of beer, not sure if that is East coast slang) for like $2, so we grabbed some of those and checked out the sites and sounds of Las Vegas. What a convenient place for an open container policy… It was nice to be able to walk into casinos with my own beer.
I’ve heard of the prostitute trading cards before, but this was my first time in Vegas, so I’d never seen them before. There are people standing all over the place on the strip, handing out baseball-card sized ads for escort services. Each card has a girl’s name and picture on it, along with contact info (and sometimes prices). Pretty entertaining, but within 5 minutes I had a stack about 3 inches thick… A stack of cards, to clarify.
Anyway, I didn’t go all-out in Vegas, because I wanted to be able to drive the next day without being hungover. My first day of work was also the following Monday, so I wanted to be in tip-top shape for that. We spent the rest of our night in a casino called O’Sheas that a couple of people had recommended. It was obviously aimed towards the college crowd, as they had a bunch of beer pong tables setup, and bad cover bands playing Blink 182 songs.
Ate a huge free breakfast the next morning, compliments of the Marriott, and then hung out by the pool for a while before hitting the road. That last day of driving was rough. We were both pretty exhausted at that point, and just wanted to be done with the drive. We hit a lot of traffic coming out of Vegas, and ended up arriving in LA around 6:30 or so. My sister’s flight back to Philly wasn’t leaving LAX until 11:30, so I decided I’d push through my exhaustion and try to do some sightseeing with her. We checked out Hollywood Blvd and Sunset Blvd, and then headed to LAX.
My first week of work has gone pretty well. I haven’t had a whole lot of work to do so far, but I did some research on mobile SEO for a huge client. The people I work with all seem cool and knowledgeable, and it’s definitely a very casual, welcoming environment.
We filled out some paperwork today for an apartment in Redondo Beach. Hopefully everything goes smoothly, because it was a pretty nice place… And I can’t wait to have my own room again.
I believe we’re heading to Joshua Tree for the weekend to do some rock climbing and camping. It will be a little while until I’m situated and can actually sit down and upload some photos, but when I do, I’ll be sure to post them here. Weekend begins… Now.