Thursday, February 9, 2012

Getting Lost: First Fridays

I AM lazy and I will be the first to admit that. I like staying home, curling up on the couch in my pajamas, with a cat or two and watching stupid television with my husband. Add a glass of wine to that and it is my perfect Friday night. However, I live in Los Angeles and this fact does have me feeling guilty about the fact that my husband and I never go out. So this semester I purposefully took the Theatre in LA class because we are required to go out into the city and see a play every week. Friday night found me in Venice on abbot Kinney on the first Friday of the month to see "Awake in a World that Encourages Sleep" at the Electric Lodge. Normally this would not be a big deal but this area has been one I have avoided in the past, especially on a first Friday. I hate crowds, which is the biggest reason why I hate going out. If the place is worth going to then it is probably crowded, which for me, then eliminates the worth going part of it. First Fridays on Abbott Kinney definitely draws the crowds. Luckily my parents and I arrived early in order to make parking less of a headache.

The shops that align Abbott Kinney are full of unique items far beyond the reach of my wallet but a girl can dream and this is the place to do it. A home store full of items from Scandinavia left me puzzling at the tags in the unfamiliar language. We walked along the street admiring the blast from the past architecture, which sent my mother right back into the 60's. The smell of the gathering food trucks began to intrigue us and we started to ponder what kind of food we wanted for dinner.

We were pushed here and there as several kinds of people made their way up and down the street. We weaved between people doing our best not to step on a tiny Chihuahua. She turned her head either snarling back at us for almost stepping on her or she simply pleading that we rip the fluffy pink tutu off of her so she could continue her walk with dignity.

After scouring the block we honed in on a parking lot with the coveted grilled cheese truck and my mother declares she will eat that, even though we had it one week earlier. The parking lot belongs to a bar so we hunker down, hiding from the growing numbers of people, sip rather expensive beers and wait for the food trucks to serve. Leaving the grilled cheese truck for ten minutes was a mistake, seeing that the line had grown to fifteen people deep and we had to wait even longer, however it was definitely worth it. With cheese on the outside of the grilled bread, sweet grilled onions and perfectly melted Gruyere cheese, that delectable sandwich cannot be found elsewhere. First Fridays on Abbott Kinney in Venice beach are a huge attraction and if you want food you should get there early, in fact if you don't you may as well go somewhere else unless standing in line for thirty minutes to an hour for food out of a truck sounds like fun, which to m obviously isn’t. I hate crowds, but they are there for a reason and even though it was crowded I will probably return to a First Friday in Venice, but look for me early because I will definitely beat the crowds.

--Mickala Jauregui
Caption: Abbot Kinney Blvd
Credit: Gema Campos Hernando, via flickr creative commons

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