Do you still remember that place you have dreamed of since you were young? Have you visited already? Are new places filling your dreams during your waking life? Sometimes it does not matter what you do when you are at that specific place you dreamed of, just because you made it there. You took a plane, a train, a boat, and you fulfilled your dream. Time then becomes yours because you don’t need anything to happen to be happy besides just being. Your holiday is made from the get go. This happened to me in Los Angeles, the city I have dreamed of going since I was 17.
Of course, I planned what I wanted to see in LA and, of course, I did not get round to see everything. Sometimes I felt a sense of sadness just because I had to leave a certain place, like the Getty center or the Griffith observatory: Los Angeles is not next door and the plane ticket is not nearly as cheap as I need it to be, but there are so many amazing places I’d love to spend more time. However, after that sudden moment of sadness, I also felt an incredible joy building in my body. I realized: ‘I am here and no one can stop me from returning’, ’I am here, and whoever said that would never happen was wrong’, ‘I am here and I still cannot believe I am really here’. I took everything in, the big things but also the seemingly very small. I engaged all my senses. Yes, I saw the Hollywood sign, yes, I walked in Beverly Hills, but I also watched pelicans nibble on the fish that fishermen dropped at the pier in Santa Monica. I went to Muscle beach but also sat down to watch a friendly game of basketball while drinking a Slurpee. I looked at all the stars and prints at Man’s Chinese theatre, but I also had conversations with people who will never even own a television set. I read on the beach and I swam in the ocean, I felt as if I belonged there at that spot and at that moment.
Los Angeles is often portrayed as a city full of glitz and glamour and plastic fantastic. Of course, if you wish to find that part, you will find that part. I, on the other hand, felt that LA is the place where everyone, no matter how big, small, old, or young, can walk around without instantly being judged for who they are: I saw a homeless man talking to a, seemingly, rich woman on a terrace of a fancy restaurant. They were engaged in a deep discussion about life. I saw genuine beauty not only on the outside but also on the inside because people did not feel the need to hide themselves for fear of looking out of the ordinary. They were human beings and just that fact was enough to interact: Being was enough. I saw people on the bus and metro from all walks of life talking and helping one another instead of ignoring each other. And I, someone who never talks to strangers, joined in. I took the time to understand the people I was talking to and I tried to ‘understand’ the city by just breathing in its vibe. I learned to walk into a situation without any prejudice because I was genuinely interested in what people had to tell. I learned that everybody and every city has a story and that story deserves my time. Whilst at the same time I have to kick my time and plans to the curb and just be inside the moment with every bone in my body and with all my heart.
About the Author: Joyce Vos is an independent writer in the blogging, content writing, and translation field. Creative writing, travelling, and drawing/painting are things she is passionate about. One of her many dreams is travelling as much as she can.
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