Santa Monica is a city about 14 miles west of downtown Los Angeles, California. It is known for its beach, and as an affluent area where some of the Holywood rich and famous live. Many people probably recognize the Santa Monica Pier, a landmark in Southern California with the little amusement park at the pier, white sandy beach nearby, and the row of expensive beach front homes. And the image of people at the beach and the lifeguards in red swimsuits were made famous worldwide with the TV series Baywatch.
I didn’t know much about the area until few years ago when my brother got a job with a company located there. During a couple of years that he worked and lived there, I had several opportunities to visit him, and came to appreciate the place. My brother lived in an apartment about 5-minute walk from the beach, and from his living room of his apartment we could actually see the beach in a distance. The temperature is pretty constant about few degrees cooler than in the inland, and the area enjoys around 310 days of sunshine a year. Despite of being in a driven metropolitan like Los Angeles, life seems to be more laid back as you get closer to the beach.
Few months before my brother moved back to the East Coast, I had a major life event happening, and my brother suggested that I took a little break and came over to California at least for a few days. I did that, and not only it was nice to hang out with my brother for a few days, but it’s also nice to just walk around the beach simply to get fresh air, watch life goes on around, and think about the next steps I would take in my life. What we didn’t know was that my brother himself would go through similar situation not long after, and he ended up making decision to move back to the East Coast afterwards.
The last time I went there was to mark the beginning of the road trip back to the East Coast with my brother. Now that I don’t really have anyone I know living there, I’m not sure if I have any reason for going there to visit. But at least the place has more meaning to me than simply a place you see on TV shows.
The photo below was taken the night before we started our road trip. This was the neon sign at the famous Santa Monica Pier.