Day 1b: Ok. What a travel day...

Published: July 30th 2018
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Flying into LAFlying into LAFlying into LA

Flight landed at 12h18. I got to my hostel at 18h03. LA has not been good to me.
And so starts round two! Shorter time this go around - San Fran and Seattle to see the Jays (I will honestly be happy if I see *ONE* win because they are so bad this year lol), Portland (because I don't know how to book a train ticket to Vancouver apparently) and then up to BC for one of my best friend's wedding 😊 Wee!

And it's been less than 24hrs and I can clearly already see that this trip is already shaping up to be a weird one with weird encounters... and super long delays lol.

Early flight out to LAX via Toronto today... I had got an email from Westjet warning about long check-ins for the US, so I came early, but since I connect at Pearson I don't do clearance here... so why the specific email? And then no warning about connections? So, I spent my time this morning people watching at Tim's lol - so many bleary eyed travellers just mindlessly sipping coffee and staring out into the abyss. I also spent a good chunk of time watching the news which ugh. I'm a little concerned about all the wildfires on the west coast and what the air is going to be like - ie I might not get to do my hiking if the air quality is too bad.

We left on time. It was super cute sitting with a little kid behind me on the flight to Toronto - so inquisitive - so many questions haha. He was also obsessed with the propellers since we were on one of the small Encore flights. It's fun to see kids take joy in so many small things that you often forget out or simply ignore as you're older.

Toronto is Toronto... I'm just thankful I didn't have to change terminals bc I def would have missed my plane. As it was I had to power walk from B gates to US connections only to go through security again (lol to all of us pouring out our water bottles because they don't tell you about double security) to then get stuck in the customs line from 8h55-9h50... which meant myself (and about 6 other groups from the Ottawa plane) then had to do the mad dash down the terminal. Like... I get it customs, you have a job, but airlines maybe don't have 1.5hr connections if they're barely possible. (They weren't even asking a bunch of questions at customs it was just a crazy long line because there's no separate line for connections...)

Anyway enough airport grumbling. I'm flying Westjet and had the BEST crew out to LA lol. Here are some of the gems:
- "Welcome on the Westjet flight to Winnipeg... Good now that I have all your attention and can see your lovely faces please listen to the safety briefing."
- "The safety briefing will be done in both of Canada's official languages: English and Pig Latin. Good I still have your attention. Give it to me for 2 more minutes."
- he did a little spiel about all the attendants on board including one guy "who will be your bartender so will be your best friend" and his own "lovely face" lol
- "Thank you for choosing Westjet. If your bum wasn't where it is, my bum wouldn't be up... so thank you from the bottom of my bum." (MY FAV THING HE SAID).
- "Reading light is above you. If you accidentally press the wrong button and call us and don't want us, then I will laugh at you."
- (seat belt sign on for a bit of an extended turbulence session) "You put sestbelts on when you go 40km/hr in a car... you're going over 800km/hr up here. Time for some offroading in the skies."
- one of them offered me my snack options in German lol. When I answered in German he's like "Do you actually speak German????? That's never happened before" Hahaha. (No, I don't but I knew the choice was cookie or pretzel)
- we did a collective series of stretches before landing (no joke 95% went along with it)
"Thanks for flying with us. Be nice to one another. Don't run with scissors. Make someone smile today. Hashtag best flight ever on your devices. Have a good day everyone!"

And then we got jokes all the way from landing to the gate... so many groaners including my fav: "What's the pilots fav flavour of chips? Plane. Unless it's an Air Canada pilot, then it's "catch-up"."

Seriously, best flight crew ever - shout out to Tyler.

The jokes went on for a bit because we got stuck on the tarmac for over an hour due to "ground congestion". Sigh. I get 10-15min, but an extra hour is rough. I then got outside and after waiting over an hour and a half for the Flyaway bus I wanted (and being told that the previous bus hadn't shown up either) I decided to just screw it and go to Union Station because it was the only bus actually passing by (other than 1 Van Nuys and 1 Long Beach). Plus I hadn't eaten anything more than granola bars since 6am (12. Hours. Welp.) since I didn't have time to get anything in Toronto.

I made it to Union, ate and then went to take the metro which would have brought me straight to my hostel. I pay. I go downstairs. Get on the train.... and wait. And wait and wait and wait. The locals were talking about how they could still see another train down the tracks and sure enough there's some big signal problem so basically none of the red trains would go.

Oh. My. God. I just want to get to my hostel.

I took the purple line as far as I could without leaving the red line path... I got off and they were doing more announcements about delays for the red line. At this point I had waited about 25min at union and it was saying it was going to be at least another 20.

There's an app for that: uber.

So I go upstairs and realize I'm so not in a good neighborhood... like... drug deals and homeless tent city and sidewalk vendors (the type with questionable merchandise). I'm standing there with my suitcase that literally has a giant CANADA plastered on it and I'm like... why am I here??? I don't think I should be here lol.

So I try to go down a side road or find something I can at least reference for pickup. Just then there's a guest of wind and I kid you not two of the tent/umbrella setups right in front of me go flying knocking over a bunch of the homeless people's stuff and I just stand there frozen like... omg it wasn't me. It was the wind! I'm so sorry! But they didn't respond (no English maybe? Or it was just a hard ignore lol) And the guy standing there didn't seem to care / didn't go to pick things up so I just like... scuttled away and felt bad. I had no idea what was happening. I finally found a medical clinic and ubered to the max to get out of there. They were probably like omg what is this gringa doing.

Oh and then I had to walk up to CVS on Hollywood Blvd and omg... I forgot the characters you have there. Some are funny (there was an Elmo without his 'head' chilling with a spiderman) and then you feel bad for the people with obvious mental health issues (so much yelling and cursing). I'm always left just hoping that they're ok. I was so surprised to see trent city along the road - like all these people just staying in tents. I feel it wasn't like that last time I was here..?

Anyway. Long story short - I should have got to my hostel around 2pm, instead it was shortly after 6pm and I'm just glad I'm leaving tomorrow because LA will be the death of me lol.


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