June was one crazy travel month! After leaving Alaska, (mid May) to help a friend move, the home didn’t close escrow. I ended up staying in Las Vegas, then flying to Los Angeles, then back to Vegas, before finally booking a PodShare, in Venice, early June.
After living with three Peace Corps homestay families, (Pre Service Training (PST) in Armenia, then two years with a family at my permanent site, followed by my PST family in Ethiopia), I figured a five day stay in an open living PodShare would be a breeze.
I, of course, was wrong. After four days (and countless bug bites), I was offered a refund for my fifth and final night. Day four, I made a funny post, on Instagram, about how the bugs at the Venice Podshare location must have known that I was a Returned Peace Corps Volunteer. Within minutes, I received a phone call and Instagram DM, from PodShare, asking me to remove the post. I have never heard of an establishment doing this. I removed the post and took the $50.00 refund.
Sleeping in an open space hotel room with fifty strangers might sound alarming. It wasn’t. The only issue (other than the bug bites) was the fact that a bed was rented to a visibly drunk man, late on my third evening. His pants were down, while he registered and paid for one night. He went straight to his bed and fell asleep. Unfortunately, his bed was directly across from mine. It was a long night of butt crack and snoring. On the bright side, the PodShare is a five minute walk from the Venice Canals and less than a fifteen minute walk from the beach. So … there’s that!
After a final walk from Venice Beach to Santa Monica, I made my way to the Metro Station, located a block from the Pier. From there, I took the Silver Line to the Red Line. My friend, (still waiting to close), picked me up from the North Hollywood station. The following Monday, we hit the road. We picked up a friend, near Santa Barbara, stopped for lunch at Pismo Beach, then we made our way to the Ragged Point Inn & Resort.
The friend we picked up, in Santa Barbara, was following up on an invitation to stay at the resort. To our surprise, at check-in, we each received our own room. Overjoyed, we quickly unpacked and made our way to the outside cafe, to toast our good fortune. We purchased drinks, but then decided to also eat. We walked next door to the restaurant. After dessert, the bill for our meal never arrived. The tab had been picked up by the Inn.
I learned that it had taken our Santa Barbara friend more than fifteen years to make her way to the resort. The next day, we were all invited to the home of the owners and then dinner at the Inn. To be a part of someone’s great fortune is an amazing thing. Only one hundred and fifty miles, just two and a half hours away, but for a multitude of reasons, it took more than fifteen years to get there. It was an amazing time. I can’t wait to return.
One of our favorite things about the Ragged Point Inn & Resort was the fact that our cell phones didn’t work. That forced us to drive up the coast to find a spot with cell service. That also meant actually stopping at places we would have normally just driven by, on our way from point a to point b. I actually looked forward to those morning and late afternoon cell phone drives.
Finally, my time in California came to an end. I didn’t help my friend move. Her house closed escrow a week after I left. Still, my time in California was pretty special. I ate Mexican at my favorite spot, La Playita, in Hermosa Beach. I walked my old Long Beach marathon training route, from Santa Monica to Venice Beach. I found an amazing restaurant next door to a yard store and …. I took public transportation! I took the free G Bus from LAX to the Green Line and then walked to my hotel. I took the new (to me) Silver Line metro from Santa Monica to North Hollywood. So! Yes! My LA street game is still intact.
For almost three weeks, I’ve been at my godson’s home in Ohio. I’ve sorted through several years of mail, after having my mail forwarded here, since 2017. I’ve also sorted and packed the one suitcase that I left in the basement. Next week, that suitcase will come with me. And for the first time, in four years, I will “soon” have all of my belongings in one place.
After a medical stop, in Durham, North Carolina, I will head back to Alaska. Then, Ghettogirltravels will be GhettogirlTiny, after I move into my first tiny home. —GGT