How to get the most out of LA the Ricardo Matthews way

The last 24 hours were spent immersed in what should be the world famous ‘Ricardo Matthews tour of Los Angeles’. It started last night with a drive by tour of Hollywood Boulevard and a stop at the Griffith observatory before we went to dinner with the entire Matthews family in an Italian restaurant where the waiters sing Broadway hits to you. Simply amazing. Especially when you go with my dad who enjoys joining in regardless of whether he knows the words or not. We then drove around a huge percentage of the city, along Mulholland Drive, through Beverley Hills, past the Capital Records building and even stopped to see ice cream being made with liquid nitrogen. The whole time we were getting fun facts about the city and it’s architecture. We literally couldn’t have asked for a better tour guide.

Then this morning we headed to Grauman’s Chinese Theatre to see the stars on the walk of fame and the handprints outside of it.

I couldn’t decide which to have my photo taken with until suddenly inspiration struck and I went with Arnold Schwarzenegger because the catchphrase “I’ll be back” is pretty much the mantra which is getting me through leaving Louisiana.

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Then, on Ricardo’s recommendation, we went to the Getty Center where dad decided to take ‘arty’ shots of everything he could see and insisted that even the crappy looking photos were just his “artistic interpretation” and therefore I wasn’t allowed to criticise it.

Here is dad pretending to be thinking deep thoughts and Ricardo destroying the questions with philosophy and logic.

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Dad and I then took a quick drive down to Redondo beach where we got slightly too much amusement out of watching a seagull steal a family’s lunch.

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FINALLY to finish off the day of adventures, I went on another night drive with Echo as our last hurrah together. Milkshakes and apple pie in a 24 hour diner was really the only way to finish. Then I had to say goodbye to the first person I met on the LSU rowing team, my pair for the year, my gym buddy and one of my best friends. Echo, the girl who looks at puppies the same way that most people look at sewage plants and stands awkwardly during hugs, got a little upset. It was a horrible, horrible kind of victory knowing that saying goodbye was actually having an effect on her. But as I said above, I’ll be back if only because my credit card got declined and I owe her money….

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Whenever I visit a city I judge it on whether or not I feel I could live there. I’m not sure if I could live in Los Angeles, but there really is something inexplicably compelling about it that I have really enjoyed.This is the kind of city that I would come back to again and again rather than be in permanently and honestly I think that is because it is SO big I think it would take years just to get a slight grip on all of the adventures it provides.

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Tomorrow we head to Sequoia and King’s Canyon National Park!

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