Friday, December 10, 2010

Greystone Mansion And The Hollywood Sign

We only had two full days in the Los Angeles area and we were determined to have make the most of it.  I wanted to eat good food and Shannon wanted to see as many sights as we could fit in.  The first day was dedicated to Disney and authentic Mexican food.  The second day was Rodeo Drive, the Greystone Mansion, Hollywood, and the Hollywood sign.

Greystone Mansion is owned by the City of Beverly Hills and is used to film movies such as the Spiderman movies and X-Men.  Heidi is looking totally rock star on the patio!

The landscaping is just amazing.  I have dreams of living in a place like this, with full time gardening staff and house keepers.  I would spend all my free time cooking in the commercial grade kitchen and someone else would do the dishes.  Some day.  Just have to win the lottery first...

Ah...  Love the turtles!  We were not able to enter the house because they were setting up for a party on one side and remodeling on the other.  I wanted to see where Dr. Xavier had his school but that was not in the cards for this visit.

After driving around Hollywood a bit and checking out the Walk of Fame, we headed up to where our GPS said the Hollywood sign would be.  We drove up and up and up and up this crazy narrow, windy street, white knuckled all the way until we finally got to the top.

We were expecting a parking lot where we would be able to walk up and get some good photos, like on TV but that's not how it works.  The road ended in a neighborhood.  The houses had gates at the end of the driveway to keep people out.  We were not supposed to be there and the only way to get a good view of the sign was to trespass on someones property.

Shannon jumped out of the car and took a few shots from the street. This is as close as you can get.

I felt just awful. One of the property owners was trying to leave his house and could not get out due to all the cars from people trying to see the sign.  Another had to call the police to shoo people out of his yard.  I could not believe that people were squeezing through a space between the gate and a hill and then climbing the hill which was clearly this guys back yard.

I am sure the problem is compounded by GPS sending people up this road, to this neighborhood.

We were there for about 3 minutes before heading back down the hill.  That was the most terrifying drive of my life, I never used the gas and I doubt that I ever took my foot off the break.  There was on street parking but the street was only as wide as two cars.  Many times, only one direction of traffic could move forward at a time.  At one point, I was head to head with a cop, probably the cop called to chase the tourists away, and I had to back up the hill about 50 feet before he could pass.

By the time we got to the bottom of the hill, I was just ready to go back to the hotel and decompress for a bit.

It was in the low 60's most of the time we were there but this afternoon it turned cold and started to rain.  The Vikings were playing the Cowboys that evening so Shawn was in the hotel room watching so we joined him for a bit. The game was so hard to watch, we ended up going for a swim in the hot tub instead.

Yes, a swim in the hot tub.  The pool was outside, it was about 55 degrees and raining.  Even us Minnesota girls, who were thawing out from a frigid winter, were not able to handle the unheated pool but the hot tub sure felt nice!  And Heidi thought she was in there illegally so every time a staff member came outside, she hid along the side of the hot tub.  It was a blast!

The next day we had plans to check out the ocean before we had to head home.  But that's another post for another day...

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