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LA: fail

July 9, 2010
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For this segment of my cross country adventure, I’ve made it to Los Angeles.

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I’m staying in Hollywood. Don’t be fooled, it’s not as cool as you think it is. In fact, I am horribly underwhelmed. You should only stay in the part of town if you intend to get a tattoo, a pipe, and a bunch of cheap tee shirts and tacky lingerie. Frederick’s of Hollywood has valet. In fact, last night I would have told you I hated LA. Today, I am a little more congenial to it, but if I never come back, I won’t mind. Like, I would follow One across the face of the planet to be with him, but not here.

Why do I feel so strongly about LA? Would you believe me if I said the transit is why I am so glad to be leaving today?

Yup, folks, transit. I am so pissed at LA transit that I condemn the whole city for it.

See, yesterday, when I got in to town and had myself a little nap, I decided to go to the train museum. This is a transit vacation, after all, so I have to do all things transit. I like themes.

The ride to my hotel from Union Station was great, and the Hollywood and Vine station is adorable, look for pictures after I get back to Georgia and download them. But that’s the only thing LA has going for it, a good rail system.

I took a cab to the Travel Town museum. It’s six miles away from where I’m staying, but I was too tired to walk or bike it (they have bikes to rent at my hotel) and the bus would have taken longer than an hour apparently, based on Google, because I would have needed to take two buses. So a cab seemed like a good idea at the time. Except the cab driver had no idea where he was going, took me to the Native American museum, and it cost me $35.

The Travel Town train museum was a bust, geared for children and rather uneventful. I overheard a child ask his mum who Casey Jones was. She told him he founded the museum.

I sure wasn’t taking another cab back, so I thought I’d try the bus. There were several problems with this plan.

A: the museum is in Griffith Park, where there are many tourist attractions, like the LA zoo. However, there is no close bus line, so I had to walk more than a mile to the nearest stop.

B: there are no sidewalks in the park, for heaven’s sake. Why are there no sidewalks???

C: I missed my transfer because the announcement system said, “Next stop Riverside and La Whatever,” as it passed La Whatever street. But that’s cool, I thought I’d ride that bus and see the city, getting off at the next station.

D: o yea, their bus schedules are next to impossible to figure out if you’re not familiar with the area so I was reading it backwards so we never went to that station, just to downtown. But downtown is cool, and so was going through Chinatown, so I’ll figured I’d find the nearest station at the end of the line.

E: o, there’s not a nearest station because downtown LA is whack. I walked down three blocks to catch another bus that should take me back to Hollywood.

F: well that’s a sketchy part of town.

G: so I get on the 10 and what the hell, I’m going the wrong way again! But I have to wait twenty minutes to figure that out because of the crappy bus schedules! They only give you a point of interest every twenty minutes on the route. As soon as I figure out I’m going the wrong way, I see the right way pass by and it’s another thirty minutes for the next one so I figure I’ll just ride this one to the next station

H: which the bus is 25 minutes late pulling into the next station.

It took me three trains to get back to my hotel, taking me four hours total, and I had enough.

I am not impressed, Metro.

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This is the bus I actually took to get me home the next day, after walking down Hollywood.

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On Metro, people sell crap to get money. I saw several folks with candy for sale. I’m pretty sure this is illegal, because this lady kept a towel with her to cover her candy box.

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. 10B permalink
    July 12, 2010 11:33 pm

    A TwinVision LED sign (like our CCT and GRTA buses)… Is LA Metro also using TalkingBus? in “classic” mode (displaying “Street A + Street B” at every street) or “modern mode” like on CCT? I usually have a harder time with the “classic” mode…

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