Arriving in Los Angeles and the US Brodies

I have never been so happy to get off an aeroplane as I was at Los Angeles International Airport. I got precisely zero sleep.

The final flight was great—especially surprise middle-of-the-night sliders that came around between lunch and breakfast (flying across a ton of timezones is weird).

One of the handles on our suitcase broke at some point during transit, so we had the fun experience of lugging it through LAX until we found a trolley. By ‘we’, I mean Josh. Obviously.

Then we met up with Auntie Lori (yay!) and bought a Coke to try and stay awake. Coke here tastes like Pepsi in New Zealand. It’s a very disconcerting experience. Josh managed to fall asleep about five minutes after we got in the car, but I kept myself awake with caffeine and chatting and trying to get used to the side of the road we were on.

We got to Paul and Lori’s house around 10am. Their house is beautiful, and the views from the backyard are completely breathtaking. It’s all gussied up for Hallowe’en, but I’m choosing to believe that the dismembered limbs and mummies on the windows are a permanent fixture đŸ˜‰

We managed to stay awake(ish) until lunchtime, when we had our first foray into an American cultural staple—In-N-Out. These burgers are freaking delicious. I am deeply impressed.

That was about the limit of our ability to stay awake, unfortunately. While I’m usually a huge proponent of keeping to the local timezone and forcing yourself to adjust that way, I was coming up on hour 40 of being awake and my body was screaming in protest. So I had a catnap and didn’t wake up until around 5pm. Best decision I could have possibly made—I was tired again by around 10pm, and slept through until 8am. Officially adjusted now.

This morning brought another cultural necessity—Walmart. A most magical land where everything is a) cheap and b) right there. I decided I was going to cook, so we picked up a bunch of groceries for lasagne and other treats. Grocery shopping was an experience—the flavour of pasta sauce I generally use didn’t seem to exist, lasagne sheets are totally different, and cheddar cheese is orange. So cooking has been a bit of an adventure! It’s in the oven currently, so it may be delicious or it may be terrible.

Then we went to a store that was all Hallowe’en costumes, all the time. Josh was a bit iffy on his Hallowe’en costume (as it involved wearing his nice suit, which is never good when combined with alcohol and candy). He got a new costume, and it’s fantastic… and that’s all I have to say until Hallowe’en!

After that, we went to pick up our rental car. And… wow. I booked a “small/compact” car. Apparently that translates to “massive sedan” in US English. And yes, he confirmed that it was a small car before he gave me the key, so it wasn’t like a sneaky surprise upgrade! We had a ton of drama getting the GPS to work—they only had one in the store, and the last person to use it had set the language to Spanish. The poor Avis guy spent ages trying to figure it out before FaceTiming a Spanish-speaking friend of his to find the language settings. Then we got to drive it home, which was… fun… staying to the right wasn’t too hard, but because I’m not used to the size of the car, balancing staying in the centre of the lane took a while. Plus I kept hitting the windscreen wipers instead of the indicator. However, no one seems to indicate here anyway so I’m probably fitting right in!

The lasagne is almost ready, so it’s probably time to wrap up… tomorrow we’re on babysitting duty and will probably take the kids to ChuckECheese, so that will be a fantastic day.

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