Momo and Mango are officially in Week 2 of their Winter Vacation.
Yippee...Yahoo...What the hell should we do?
That's exactly what I thought when I woke up this morning.
I have 2 more weeks of the kids looking at me saying : "So mom, in what fantastic way are you going to entertain us today?"
And me replying:"You're 11 and 14, isn't there some way you can entertain yourselves without driving me and each other crazy"
And they (with crazed looks in their eyes) retorting: "Mwuahahahaha...we are evil robot children come to take away your sanity by having 3 weeks off of school, fighting incessantly and repeatedly asking how you are going to entertain us...Mwauhaha...hahaha...hahahahaha...."
Ok, so maybe that last part didn't really happen, but I bet you that's what they were thinking...
I mean, look how "evil roboty" they are...
Anyhow, after I woke up this morning, I was wracking my brain trying to think of some new, fun and interesting things to do with the kids this week. I came up with a good list of things I wanted to do but everything I came up with was in Los Angeles, which is about 1.5 - 2 hours from our house (1 way)... I chalk this up to the fact that I have a little cabin fever in our small (population 11,000) beach town.
I decided that over the next two weeks, we would do at least a couple of the things on my list, maybe make one day trip this week and one next... and then like a wonderful epiphany, I realized that maybe, just maybe, my parents would be interested in hitting up some Japanese markets in L.A. and maybe we could hitch a ride.
And look...It worked! My parents showed up at our house no less than an hour after I called them and we were on our way to The City of Angels! Here's a pic of my dad driving...
My mom, the evil robot children, and Milo the dog sat in the back... My mom would say she sits in back because I get car sick, but I think it has more to do with the fact that her backside is a whole lot smaller than mine and therefor offers a more comfortable and spacious ride...
It took under an hour and a half to get to this part of the journey... I always get a little tingly inside when I get close to Hollywood... Having grown up in the larger L.A. area, I spent some of my most formative years roaming around Hollywood, and various parts of Los Angeles... I really do love it!Ohhhh...loook! There's downtown L.A.! And yes folks, that is a freeway we are sitting on with all those other cars...It was about this point that I had my second "grand idea" of the day...Realizing that both of my kids are like little country bumpkins who hardly know the little treasures that exist in Los Angeles. I asked my parents if they wouldn't mind stopping at Olivera Street so we could take the kids around a bit. And...Drumroll...guess what? It worked!
Here are some pics of our stroll down the historic street...
Momo and her grandma pausing to fidget with Milo...Mango desperately looking for a hat to buy...And a beautiful little store we passed with amazinlgy, vibrant merchandise...There really are a zillion more photos that I really want to share, but I'll save those for another post... I know this is long, but stick with me, it's worth it!
After Olivera Street We decided to hit up Little Tokyo. It's definitely not our favorite place to shop but there was "little hole in the wall" Ramen Shop that my parents insisted we had to try. Apparently everyone and their mothers also thought they needed to eat there, so we ended up waiting on the sidewalk for about 40 minutes... The wait was well worth it and I would do it again in a heartbeat. It was everything they had promised and much more... Once inside we were given a booth but check out the cool "ramen bar" typical of little ramen shops in Japan: And for a little hole in the wall place, the ambiance was really great... lots of old Japanese advertisements and t.v./movie posters covered the walls: but better than anything was the food...check out what we ate:
Japanese Pickles:Fried Spicy Tuna (spicy tuna wrapped in shiso leaves then fried in tempura batter) Amazing!!!!Gyoza (a.k.a. pot stickers)And the infamous Ramen, which tastes a lot better than it looks in this photo:Mango loved it And so did MomoWe were all full and satfisfied and really happy...even my dad...who picked up the tabAs I made a run for it...No, not really, I didn't run. But he did drive AND give up his day off AND pay for our yummy dinner (and I did thank him and my mom) but maybe, just maybe I am the evil robot child in this story, who needed to be driven all over L.A. fed and entertained...Muahahahahaha!