Topics of the day: customs, taro, crutches, Berliner, pilot, student, bus, melting pot, beach, architect
Although I absolutely hate flying (I didn’t get sick this time) the time went by quite fast (thanks to the lack of sleep I had accumulated over the last week) and felt a bit down (bad conscience not having achieved enough added to the artificial environment around me) I surprisingly met quite a few nice people in the States.
After leaving my fingerprints, photo and scan at the passport checkpoint I encountered a really nice customs officer who winked with an eye and let me through with the fresh Taro I had in my backpack (plan on gro… cooking and eating it of course). Thanks to my little brain cell I didn’t remember to pick up my crutches (ignorance is a bliss – when you’re not in pain you just forget that it exists) which meant I got a lot of exercise – walking around the buildings trying to get them back.
I still had enough time to take a bus down to Malibu Beach (a Berliner working at an info-point recommended it). On my way I met a pilot (who had never considered what impact peak oil could have on her job) – she thought I looked hungry so she gave me (70% organic (?!)) granola bars and gummy bears. On the bus I sat next to an Australian engineering student who was also heading for the beach. I went swimming in my underwear (glad the Americans in L.A. aren’t too uptight) and then pretty much hopped on the bus to get back again. I met a lady from Scotland (who somehow knew I was studying in Scotland – do I have it stamped on my forehead?) and listened to the bus driver talking to a passenger about fish quite loudly but in a very friendly manner. L.A. seems to be a multicultural melting pot – it’s not as anonymous as I had imagined it to be – that bus ride was quite a pleasant experience although I was afraid I’d miss my connecting flight.
On the plane I sat next to a young architect from Kazakhstan. She was quite open-minded so we talked about sustainable buildings… and I told her how the Polynesians used to build their “fare” – air-conditioning seems to be a big thing/problem in L.A. too… Hope mankind will smarten up a bit: just because some ideas have been around for a while doesn’t mean they’re not up-to-date/relevant – I’m so sick of techno-fixes…
Final thoughts of the day: Air New Zealand has recycled toilet-paper (small sheets – easier to dose/meter out) and organic soap wasn’t sure if I should be happy or cynical about that… green washing or actually trying? A drop in the ocean? Where does one start to make a difference?