February 7, 2012

postcards from the road - hey hollywood

This past weekend I had the opportunity to do something I don't normally do: I took a vacation from work AND I actually went somewhere for it.

One of my best friends from college and his roommate were kind enough to let me visit them for a few days in Los Angeles. They live in West Hollywood, which put me in close proximity to a lot of fun.

For me, every experience I have is research for a story. Whether I'm describing a person, the way someone talks or a city, each experience plays a part.

My friend showed me around the Hollywood Hills, WeHo (that's West Hollywood for all of you who didn't know what that was, like I didn't), Malibu and places in between. I ate avocados at all but one meal, because I could. I had lots of grown-up drinks and broke-out into spontaneous and not-so-spontaneous song and dance — again, because I could.

Oh, and on our way back from an afternoon in Malibu, we totally saw Jeremy Piven standing in the middle of the road. Totally random, but entertaining regardless.

This trip definitely gave me a lot of inspiration for my work. Not only did I see amazing sites and have fun, but I also spent a lot of my time around other writers and creative-types. We brainstormed, swapped war stories and offered advice to each other. I had heart-to-hearts, and a couple of totally ridiculous conversations, with the people I met, and I loved every moment. It was definitely good for my soul.

The best part of the long weekend? I missed a massive snow storm that hit Nebraska while I was gone. Just kidding. Seeing old friends and making new ones was the best part. Being gone for that storm was a definite perk.

I need to give a quick thank you to Katie, who watched and reviewed last week's Parks and Recreation for me, and Andrew and Amy for their hospitality. It's easy to feel blessed when you have fantastic friends.

Enjoy a few photo postcards from my latest adventure:

Me with a few of my new one-night-only friends at a karaoke bar in WeHo.
I loved it there. It was fun, vibrant and an all-around good time.
Me at a dog park near the famed Hollywood sign. The weather was gorgeous
in L.A., I had a hard time saying good bye.
View from the Hollywood Hills.
I channel my inner pirate on a pier in Malibu. I envy every person
who lives on that beach.
The plane rides and layovers to and from L.A. were useful, too. I read most of a book that needed reviewing, threw down a couple thousand books on my novel and I wrote a webisode for a show I'm working on. As much as I love leisure, I'm also a girl who enjoys productivity.

I am already counting down the days until my next L.A. adventure in June. I had such a great time. I wish I would've taken more photos! (I have more than these, but not nearly enough.)

Thanks for taking a few moments to check out a few highlights.

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