While spending the night in a Korean spa is absolutely fantastic while you’re de-stressing in the sauna rooms, it doesn’t make for the best sleeping, unless you have the superpower that allows you to sleep soundly no matter where you are. (A superpower I, unfortunately, do not possess.) Even in the dark and supposedly quiet “sleeping room” I still spent a lot of time listening to people talking, TVs playing various K-dramas and even Henry’s “Fantastic” video (which I didn’t mind at all) rather than sleeping. I know I dozed off a couple of times but by four in the morning, Tanya and I were both awake (the curse of being in L.A. while running on East Coast and central time) and ready to start our day. With most of the spa sound asleep, Tanya and I did the only logical thing one can do at four in the morning, we headed to the common area and grabbed a coffee and a bubble tea and enjoyed a little bit of quiet catching up time. From there it was back through all of the sauna rooms (and yes, the clay ball room was every bit as glorious as it had been the night before and surprisingly, so was the ice room) before getting cleaned up and setting out on our adventures for the day.
With so many things in L.A. to see and do, you would think it would be difficult deciding where to go when you’ve got an entire city lying at your feet but for me, the choice was easy. You see, I’m an ocean addict. I absolutely love the beach, I love the wind and the waves, the smell of sea, the cry of the gulls, the sand between my toes, the waves rushing around my ankles… Well, you get the idea. Having never been on the West Coast before, I was determined to see the Pacific at least once and Tanya was sweet enough to oblige me. From the spa in K-Town, we made our way to Santa Monica and by 6:30 I was standing on the beach, the waves splashing against my legs, the happiest zombie in the world. Of course, being the fangirl that I am, it was only natural that I pull out my iPod and start playing B1A4’s “Solo Day” as I searched for aliens, hoping the Matoki variety would miraculously show up. Alas, the Matokis never made a visit but I did enjoy walking along the pier with my BFF, soaking it all in. Literally. I was soaked. (The waves got a little frisky while I was strolling along the beach and I spent a good bit of my morning wandering around Santa Monica looking like I had wet my pants. Welcome to my life!)
From the beach it was straight to Starbucks for the ever-necessary coffee and breakfast before heading to the Third Street Promenade for a little sight-seeing and shopping. But not before making a quick stop at the parking garage so I could change. (Oofta! The chafing that day was real!) For those of you who have no idea what the Third Street Promenade is (which I didn’t until I was actually there), it’s a gigantic pedestrian-only, outdoor shopping district full of clothing stores, boutiques, book shops, gift shops, theaters, restaurants, coffee shops… Basically, you name it and you can probably find it there. There were so many stores to wander through and though a lot of them didn’t really fit my budget I did manage to find a couple of things that did, my favorite being a pair of skinny jeans for $7. Can you believe that? (I’m still amazed by that find!) Marching down the center of the Promenade are several Tim Burton-esque dinosaurs (which I loved) and street performers can be found at their feet, their music desperately crying for attention amid a sea of shoppers.
After shopping came mani-pedis (because even though we spent an entire evening at a spa, we never got our nails done… Go figure!) and then it was off to find SPICA at their semi-publicized, supposed fan meeting at a little Korean boutique near China Town. While Tanya navigated through the insanity of L.A.’s freeways, I enjoyed the view and being so enamored by my $7 skinny jeans, I decided I needed to wear them when I met SPICA so I did what any zombie would do, I changed in the car, on the freeway, in downtown L.A., which was no easy feat (brand new skinny jeans can be a bit tight at first) but with a jacket over me and a lot of wiggling, I managed to change and felt pretty darn awesome afterwards. (What can I say, small accomplishments make me happy.)
Arriving at Seoula Fashion right around the time SPICA was supposed to be there, Tanya and I decided to take a look around and oh my goodness! Talk about some amazing clothes! It’s no wonder SPICA decided to shop there! There were so many adorable dresses, most of which would never fit me in a million years, but I did find a top that was not only amazing but more surprisingly, fit! Tanya wanted to buy it for me but I reminded her there were so many other things to buy (mainly albums) and she agreed that was much more important than a shirt. (Don’t you love how the mind of a K-Pop fangirl works?)
Waiting for SPICA was supposed to be a quick, they run in, do some shopping, take a couple of pics with fans and leave thing but it wasn’t. Not even close. The girls were supposed to arrive at the boutique at 2, the didn’t show up until after 5. They were supposed to bring groups of fans in to take pics before leaving. They didn’t. They got out of their van, waved to the fans, shut themselves in the shop for an hour, waved to the fans as they left the shop, got back in their van and left. Had I been a die-hard fan of SPICA, I would have been sorely disappointed in this failed fan-meeting but I’m not so I wasn’t. In the hours of waiting for them to arrive, Tanya and I had some most delicious dumplings and a raw tuna salad that was so incredibly delicious, I’m sure I heard angels singing while I ate it. We also spent quite a bit of time chatting with other fangirls who were waiting for their chance to see SPICA up close, which was an enjoyable way to pass the time and unfortunately, we had a lot of time to pass.
Once SPICA came and went, it was back to K-Town for us and meeting up with several of Tanya’s California friends. Wandering around K-Town, window shopping and catching up with friends is a fantastic way to spend an evening and that’s exactly what we did. Dinner was at Curry House, dessert was at Paris Baguette (which is where we found the cake as sexy as Yongguks’s voice and yes, that is the only way to describe that heavenly dessert) and then it was off to the hotel to settle in, finish up our cosplay costumes, laugh with friends and eventually crash. Which we did, somewhere around 2 in the morning… I think. Let’s just say sleep is not something I did a lot of while I was in L.A.!