Blogger: Daniel Calzadillas
Zoom. Zoom. Beep. Screech. Zoom. Zoom.
The stream of cars is neverending as I wait for the bus. What is a cacophony to others is a sound that continues to excite me. The cars that keep passing, day and night, are a reminder that I am no longer in my small town in Colorado.
I am in Los Angeles.
Dynamic, global, chaotic, and exciting Los Angeles. This city is full of little bookstores, charming cafés, cheap eats - and cars. It’s also full of mega malls, expensive houses, and - of course - celebrities. You find all different kinds of people walking - actually mostly driving - to all different kinds of places.
How I live in Los Angeles without a car is beyond me. However, I have managed to explore much of this city using the often inefficient public transportation. One of my favorite pastimes while waiting for the bus is to take a look at the cars that pass me by. I imagine a life for the people behind their wheel. The black BMW belongs to the corporate mogul who is late to a lunch meeting somewhere. The racketing old red sedan belongs to a mother taking her kids to school. Even the Target shopping cart belongs to someone - a man who found himself in a dark place and can see no exit.
The people who drive this city come from all corners of this earth. Quite literally. You see different neighborhoods each with distinct ethnic character. There’s Little Tokyo, Boyle Heights, Little Ethiopia, Chinatown, even Glendale. Never in my life had I been exposed to such a plethora of personalities, beliefs, customs, and desires. From the hipster writing at the coffee shop to the aspiring actor networking in the chic new restaurant to the retired professor working in the bookstore - all these people make up this city.
Observing them, their lives - and their cars - leaves me wondering what is to become of me. How will my experiences at Oxy shape me? What car am I going to drive? But most importantly, where is it that I will be driving to?
Daniel is a sophomore from Vail, Colorado majoring in Diplomacy and World Affairs with a minor in Philosophy. He is a member of Phi Kappa Psi and Los Compadres. His pastimes include reading and thinking about the immortality of the crab. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.