Heading to the City of Angels

1 year down, 2 to go – I can’t believe I’m 1/3 of the way through my degree already. This year has been the longest yet fastest year of my life, I swear. I also cannot believe that…

…I am going to California! Namely, Los Angeles and San Francisco. I’ve always been an impulsive person, but this is probably the biggest impulse-buy that I have ever made – I managed to get $999/return flights from Auckland to LAX and I leave on the 7th November. So far I’ve got it planned so that I spend my first day (I arrive in the afternoon that Sunday) with my sister as she has no weekend classes or activities, and I’m staying at a highly rated hostel in Hollywood. Based on my phone calls to them, they do indeed have superb service so I’m not anxious about it and I’m super excited! The other great thing about the USA Hostels chain is that (amongst other places and services offered), they have a $45 shuttle from their Hollywood hostel up to the one in San Francisco. I had been considering flying out to New York and crashing at a family friend’s place, but the flights are just far, far too expensive – a flight from LA to NY would cost almost half of what I’m paying to fly from NZ to LA, which does sort of make sense, but at the same time, urgh. I’m just going to have to go to New York next time, on a more extensive trip. Although my heart aches at the prospect of missing out this time… But the good news is, it means I’m saving all my weekends with my sister, and also any half-days of school she has. I’ll also be staying with her in her dorms at Pepperdine University – which is a promise of spectacular views and apparently a very amazing machine in the cafeteria that offers all beverages imaginable!

The other major, major thing is I have a ticket to see the Lakers vs. Bulls! It took me about three bloody hours to get a ticket last night, because Ticketmaster USA is a dickhead. For some unknown and unexplained reason, their website kept failing to sell the ticket to me. Then I rang (luckily for free, thanks to Gmail) them up and spent a couple of hours wrangling up a fake US accent and shouting down the line to their automated system. I can understand why it took several attempts to recognise me saying things like “Chicago Bulls” or “November 23rd”, but when it failed to recognise me saying “yes” or “no” – that was just too far. I ended up trying to emulate the recording’s voice in an attempt to sound, uh, more understandable? I hope when I’m thirsty in a restaurant I don’t have to try and say “water” in a US accent, because that would absolutely kill me and my dignity. I know Liv had to do it once, because us NZ kids say “war-ta” instead of “waaah-terrr”. On the other hand, I’m a little curious to see as to where people will guess I’m from, based on the fact that I look asian but certainly don’t act nor speak particularly asian-like. In fact, I can’t even put on an asian accent when speaking in English – I know white people that can do it and I can’t!

Ramblings aside – does anyone have any recommendations for food/music/sights/shopping/galleries/museums/etc in LA/San Fran or any general tips on visiting the states? Mum and friends have been trying to teach me how to tip but I don’t think I’ll ever understand completely until I have to do it in person. I’ll probably look like a moron sitting there trying to work out the smallest amount I can get away with leaving though… haha. Oh yeah, I’m also tossing up whether or not to go and see Best Coast’s gig, but the problem is, I’m apparently going to Disneyland on the day of the gig that isn’t sold out, and I think people stay at Disneyland until nighttime?

Below: miscellaneous pics from Friday, after my last assessment of the year. You won’t believe how goooood it felt. Although now I’m anxious about marks, passing, etc…
Charlotte and I had a feast at Wagamama with a voucher I had. It came to under $20 each, and we both had a big serving of noodles, edamame and lemon iced tea.

The hoodie I bought for Liv upon her request… she wanted some kind of “NZ apparel” because apparently wearing things from your hometown is big thing to do in American universities:


  1. SJ October 31, 2010

    You’re so lucky Amanda Cheng! And I’m so jealous of you!! :evil:
    You must take heaps of photos :grin:
    I think Liv will love that hoody.
    And my 21st shall be moved, 99% of the reason is cos you’re away lol!

    PS. what camera did you use for those photos? they look very crisp and clear.

  2. eemusings October 31, 2010

    duuuuuude. i’m so jealous! I saw those exact same tickets and was like F you air nz! I can’t get leave that soon! Seriously if they’d been for the exact same times NEXT year it would’ve been perfect.

    Nice work getting the deal, and happy travels!!!!

  3. Angela See, Angela Blog November 1, 2010

    WOW THAT IS AWESOME!!!! :mrgreen:


  4. M November 2, 2010

    that sounds great :D:D
    i love san francisco

  5. Justine November 3, 2010

    Lucky, lucky girl on the travel bit! I wish I had an immediate relative so I can travel that far and have loads of fun. I’ve always wanted to watch a live basketball game (preferably the Lakers of course) and hope you have loads of fun!

  6. Georgina November 3, 2010

    Noodles are absolutely delicious, AHHH. :D I already feel kinda hungry after you mentioned that. :3

    I am really jealous! But I really do hope you have a good time. I am not sure what to consider cheap when it comes to flights, but I know that it would cost me thousands to go to New York and New Jersey and those are the places I would really like to go. Then again, I want to see all of America!

    I do hope you have a good time and share pictures when you get back. I’m sure anyone would understand your accent. :) When I record videos, people from America seem to be amazed at my Aussie accent. X_X It’s so strange! My friends can put on an Asian accent sometimes but I honestly cannot. :P

  7. Die Konigin Der Herzen November 4, 2010

    May I recommend shopping until you collapse, eating all the amazing food there is to consume and taking shameless amount of photographs in scenic locations???

    The Black Queen

  8. Christine November 5, 2010

    I haven’t even finished exams and you’re off to America! :(
    But I hope you have a great time over there. Take heaps of photos!!! :D <3

  9. D A K O T A!! November 5, 2010

    Hey!! hey… HEY HEY! LOL! ^_^ OMG HAVE FUN IN LA!!!

    How are you? How have you been? Haven’t heard from you in ages. How’s your blog going?

    I’m working as a market advertiser now, crazy huh! And, I’m actually working on a new project for bloggers, where you get paid for a bit of advertising. Would you be interested in having any text link adds put somewhere on your page for cash??

    If you’re interested, let me know :) You’ll be paid in USD. :-)

    Other than that… How’s everything going??

    Hope you’re well!!!

    Hope to hear from you soon :)

    xox Dakota

    my email: dakoath@gmail.com

  10. […] to call it my “spontaneous disappearing act” and I think it’s rather suitable. Just a little over two years ago, I dashed off to LA and San Francisco on a whim to see my sister and travel alone – and five days ago I pretty much bought the exact same […]

  11. Lionel May 7, 2013

    Hey there! I’m at work surfing around your blog from my new apple iphone! Just wanted to say I love reading through your blog and look forward to all your posts! Carry on the fantastic work!


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