Day 13 – Tuesday 25th May / Day 14 – Wednesday 26th May 2010

Planner • Traveller • Blogger

So Kev wakes up on his 25th birthday in Vegas. Good times. However the drive to our final destination, Los Angeles, was nearly five hours away! Bad times.

Before I describe our brief time in LA, I must remember to mention check-out at the MGM. Standing in the queue to our left were some gentlemen I recognised from Weston-Super-Mare! I know the saying “the world is a small place” can be over-used but not right now. In fact, one of the guys I recognised from my gym! We spoke and proceeded to exchange a few trip tales. Those boys focused on mainly LA and Las Vegas but they did drive to the Grand Canyon so respect to that. I kept our trip short knowing how epic it really was but I did give them details to this site so if they ever look it up, they’ll also appreciate our tour I’m sure.

Our first stop was Hollywood. We had heard from people back home LA and many of its suburbs were, well untidy and visually less glamorous than other places we’d have stopped at on our journey. I can see why now but nevertheless this didn’t stop us walking Hollywood Blv and getting a picture of ‘the sign’ – albeit from further away than we’d have liked.

During our stay in LA we headed for Newport Beach (The OC) but only made it as far as Seal Beach (also in the OC) due to time and physical constraints. At least this is somewhere to visit next time. Yes, that’s correct, we will be here again in the US one day. Following a recommendation from our now US resident friend Bushy, we did make visits to both Huntington and Venice (muscle) beaches.

Here we are at Huntington beach.

The four flags are the that of the USA national, the Californian state, Huntington’s very own and the POW/MIA flag.

Now time for Venice beach – it soon becomes apparent why it is often called muscle beach.

We didn’t look into LA very much and it showed as every other day worked to plan quite almost perfectly. Having plonked various addresses into the Sat Nav we reached a couple of the places we wanted to (Hollywood included) but didn’t plan these around rush hour traffic. It wasn’t pleasant but hey, turning it into an experience, we can now say we’ve sat in LA traffic and yes, it is as bad as they say.

Now, saving the best for last. Have you heard of the Wild Card Gym? I hadn’t prior to this trip. This was a suggestion by Gino and Dan. After Venice beach, they want to see another gym!? Why?

In the above photo we see Dan and Gino having “chats” with a man. This man is Freddie Roach and this is his gym. Below are online images I’ve found of boxers training in this very gym

Should you not be au fait with boxing, that’s Amir Kahn and arguably pound for pound the best fighter in the entire world, Manny Pacquiao. The seven weight division supremo who also helped train Oscar de la Hoya.

You must be wondering how us “normal” folk got into this gym and having spoken with the man himself. This was thanks to Gino and Dan’s recent affiliation with some-guy (possibly an Uncle) connected to Amir Kahn. The rest is history.

Sadly it was time to hand back the cars and catch our flight home. We were once again massively lucky as an earlier flight from LAX to Heathrow via BA was cancelled due to the strike. Mind you, you wouldn’t have heard us moan if we were told we would have to stay a few more nights.

On behalf of myself and the lads, thanks so much for sharing the journey with us. We hope you enjoyed everything as much as we did (well, nearly) 🙂 – See you in 2011 for another epic adventure I’m sure…For those who want to join next time, get in touch.

Thank you all for tuning in. Only wish I’d pointed more people to this now. Always something to learn hey…

Peace all.

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