Hustle and Bustle


It’s good to be back home.  For the past few weeks my daughter and I spent vacation in Los Angeles.  It’s been twenty-two years since my last visit there. As soon as we step out of the airport it was a bit of shock to me, how crowded and horrible the traffic.  It’s an introvert’s nightmare.  It felt like that opening scene in Saving Private Ryan where everything is calm while there were still in open sea away from enemy fire and artillery. Joking and laughing while waiting for the Navy to drop them off for an amphibious assault.  Doing their best to ease the weariness and what if scenarios playing on their minds.  No matter how much I try to convince myself everything is going to be fine, I can’t help and think (and I tend to always over think) as the anticipation build up.

Sometimes I get stress up when I’m with my daughter.  Specially when I get bombarded with so many questions.  I feel like I’m holding a press conference with a bunch of reporters pack into one body.  One thing I love about kids is their curiosity and they’re not afraid to ask questions, no reservations and no judgements.  I was already annoyed that our flight got delayed and switch into a flight with two stops instead of a direct flight.  So being a good daughter and a good daughter she is, we had an impromptu press conference up in the air.  No holding back, ask  questions away where the entire passengers could hear you loud and clear.

“Papa, what if we crash?  What would happen if the plane flips upside down?  What if we die?  Are we going to heaven after that?  That man looks weird.  Why is she like that?  Why is he dress like that?

Yes, she was asking all these questions while we were cruising at an altitude of 30,000 to 40,000 feet.  I was actually anticipating that some passengers would have a panic attack and eventually get us kick off the plane, that would be a story to tell.  There I was, telling her to stop, she could whisper it to me or ask me later, and not while we were 30,000 feet above ground, not cool at all.  But hey kids, what can you do.

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Touch down LAX!  Whew, thank God that’s finally over, so off we go to pick up our luggage.  There’s this Hasidic Jew standing a couple of feet away from me and my daughter blurted out while she’s pulling my arm, “Hey Papa, look it’s Abraham Lincoln!”  I’m pretty sure he heard her loud.  And I’m just trying to contain myself from bursting in laughter.

Comparing it here, Kansas City is so provincial.   A lot of places to go you’ll never get bored and there’s the beach.   But it seemed that wherever we go we always get stuck in traffic and most of the time we’re always waiting in line.  People are always in a hurry, it’s always fast pace.  It’s impossible to savor and feel your surroundings.  Five lanes on the freeway, drivers cutting each other.  A traffic light on the on ramp.  Four stacks of overpass on the freeway.  Late night, early morning the road is always filled up with cars though with less traffic.

I also had a chance to eat at In-n-Out.  It’s one of the things I was looking forward to.  Since there’s no In-n-Out here and almost everyone says that it is good.  That and spending time at the beach.  This place is always pack.  When we got there it was almost closing time and there’s a long line of cars on the drive thru.  With all the hype, I would say it’s alright, but I expected more.  Culver’s burger taste better, but I would prefer In-n-Out’s fries.

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If you read my previous posts I always mention how friends and families try to hook me up with someone.   Everywhere I go, it seems that their primary goal is to find that special someone for me.  I just wanted to have fun, see LA and the things it offers.  My cousins got me surrounded like King Arthur’s knight’s round table with me at the center of it?  “Don’t you feel alone?  Don’t you want to be happy?”  I replied, “I am happy.”  “Oh, you’re not we know that you’re not even though you keep saying you’re fine.  Don’t you want someone to help you out?  How do you even survive by yourself?  With my eyes rolling I replied again “I am happy.”  With a strong opposition my  eldest cousin said back to me, “The only way you can be happy is for you to have a girlfriend, as long as you’re single you’re lonely.”  I was like really?  That’s the only way to be happy?

Palm Springs, El Paseo, Manhattan Beach, Redondo Beach, Long Beach, Aquarium of the Pacific, Universal Studios, Glendale, Americana, Panorama City, Downtown LA, Little Tokyo.  LA and California has a lot of places to offer.  My relatives tried with all persuasive words and argument to move and live there since I don’t have any relatives here except my daughter.  In which I said, “You guys should move there.”  All they say is, what’s in Kansas City?    Don’t they have KKK’s? At that point I just shake my head and laugh. KKK?  Really?  It’s boring there.  Horses, carriage and cows. How do you know a place is boring if you haven’t even live there.

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In spite of all the fun, I know I shouldn’t be missing Kansas City.  At the end of the day I miss the peace and quite here.  The calmness it brings.  The late night and early morning drives as I come home from work with a few cars on the road. I guess it’s just the introvert in me and being content with what I have and where I live and just appreciate what God has given me.  I admit they are times I consider living there to be with family, maybe in the near future if God wills it.

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As of now, hustle and bustle is not for me, I love the peace that Kansas City has brought me.  The entire time I was there, it didn’t even rain  nor a thunderstorm not even a drizzle. And I love rain…and the sound of thunder.

Would you rather live in a big city or a small town?  Why?
Is there anything you’d like to share traveling with your kids?

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