Thursday, September 19, 2013

Life On The Other Side

After much talk and loads of debate, we finally went ahead and did it. We moved our brood out to Los Angeles. It's been about two months since we made the jump, which feels like the proper amount of time it takes to really begin settling in to life in a new place. And after spending the last eight years in New York, I'd all but forgotten what it was like to feel the energy of a different town. To put on the skin of another city and walk around in it for a while. For a not-so-well traveled person like myself, getting acquainted with my new home has been pretty dang cool (and also kind of scary, but LA and I are still just getting to know each other.)

So far, my view of southern California ain't so bad. The people are friendly enough and the mountains are so divine and jarringly surreal, they almost look as if they've been painted on the skyline as part of some elaborate movie set. As you'd expect, the film industry dominates this corner of the country, with everyone from the dog walker to the dry cleaner trying to sell you his screenplay. While Manhattan is filled with dancers and dreamers and artists of all stripes, you can't swing a stick in LA without knocking over ten screenwriters. At this very moment, I'm at a restaurant eavesdropping on two men sitting at the next table who are genuinely surprised that some guy named Chip liked a new storyboard. 

"I mean, I just didn't think he'd go for taking the project in that direction, you know?" 

Truly, this guy can't believe it.

These are the snippets of conversation I hear everywhere here in LA. (I'm a chronic eavesdropper, always have been. The natural storyteller in me can't help but pine for all the details. Who's Chip?! Is he an asshole? And what's so terrible about the new storyboard?!)

It's a funny place, Los Angeles. One I'm still introducing myself to. On the surface, we may very well be unlikely pals. But then I spend five quiet minutes on the Pacific, with the mountains stretching out into the ocean until they almost disappear completely. My hand shading my eyes as they struggle to make out where the hills begin to fall away, wondering about all that might lie on the other side.