Off to Crazytown

Santa Monica Liquor Store

Approaching the Los Angeles coastal suburb of Santa Monica, the traffic gets busier and more chaotic. The drivers are heavy on the horn, and things start to get a little crazy. It’s another seaside stay, but there’s a very different feel about Santa Monica.

Santa Monica Christmas Tree

We hit the town on the first night, in search of food and drink. We found a busy bar full of young things in fancy dress — students, I guess. We were all stood around a rather glorious Christmas Tree made of shopping trolleys, which really appealed to my sense of cynicism.

Santa Monica Beach

The following morning, after another breakfast burrito, it was time to walk to nearby Venice Beach. We walked past many joggers, exercisers, and surfers. Everyone had something to do, even though they weren’t doing anything useful.

Venice Beach Pier

Venice Beach was packed with surfers. And it was also full of lunatics. No one was normal. Normal people were strange, and strange people were normal. Everyone was selling something. And if they weren’t selling for money, they were selling themselves.

Venice Beach Bohemia

At one stage, an old rasta guy roller-skated past me playing electric guitar with an amp on his back. I didn’t even blink, I’d become normalised.

Venice Beach Shops

We also walked through Muscle Beach, which is basically a load of people trying to look something like Arnold Schwartzenegger.

Muscle Beach

Venice Beach was getting to be a bit too much, so we headed back for the relative sanity of Santa Monica, dodging up-and-coming musicicans keen to get you to buy their latest CD-R.

Venice Beach Strangeness

Suddenly, a fog descended on the beach, and things took on a surreal quality, as ghouls and weirdos receded into the mist.

Santa Monica Opportunism

Colour vision returned to normal, cleansed by the grey fog. Maybe there was something extra was in that drink I’d had at breakfast time.

Oh well, maybe I should stick to bottled water. There’s a convenience store down the road selling pH 6.5 water. No, just give me another breakfast burrito and I’m outta here!

Santa Monica Pier

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