I passed thru the iron gates and punched the building code at the keypad. A small buzz and a door click after and I found myself inside the building. It was late in the evening, around 11 pm and as I stepped into a small 4 person elevator, I rummage thru my bag and find my key.
Well technically, this is not MY key. But somehow, me booking this small room in East Hollywood over Airbnb and the owner giving me the building code and a key to the apartment made me feel like for 4 days, this was my key, this, my building. I felt like a local and all that warm fuzzy nakakakilig feelings.
My first Airbnb experience was pleasant, to say the very least.
I had 4 days more to spare and decided to spend more time in LA. In the states, I realized that I am a city girl. I like things happening around me. Or at least near me, like I can get to it with just a bus or a subway ride.
The public transportation situation in OC is abysmal. I am suddenly thankful that at least back home in Manila, I can move around. Inconveniently sure, but possible.
Since I had a very pleasant first Airbnb experience, I decided to look for a new Airbnb but around the same area. I was familiar with the bus routes and I found East Hollywood very convenient, at least for the things I wanted to do. As opposed to my small (probably a converted closet) private room on my first Airbnb booking, I booked a shared room this time in a studio in between Hollywood and Franklin. 3 clinchers: 1. It was cheap, and cheap is always a good thing. 2. Griffith Park was just right behind it. You know, if ever I felt the inclination to suddenly hike (and I did!) and 3. They had a dog.
I arrived with my heavy pack at the doorstep of my 2nd airbnb and punched my host’s codes. I got buzzed in and took the stairs and the long narrow hallway to the apartment. I heard barking and knew I was in the right place.
Janica welcomed me in and so did Joy, the mixed lab she adopted. I sat down and dropped my bag on the converted couch — my bed for 3 nights — and started talking to Janica. She asked the typical questions you’d ask a traveler: where you’re from? how long will you be staying over? where have you been? and how’s LA treating you thus far. Joy, who barked at me through the door was initially curious of the new visitor but suddenly found her head right under my hands and was now asking for loving pats. While I was chatting with her owner, Joy got one of her toy, shoved it to my hand and I was now playing a very playful/aggressive (she’s a lab, im used to a lazy english bulldog) tug of war while recounting my recent adventures with her owner.
“You must have good energy. She doesn’t warm up that quickly to people.”
Yeah, dogs kinda love me.