Traffic. Oh my fucking god, will I NOT miss the traffic. I have been lucky, that for the past year & a half, my commute has been less than 3 miles (currently 3 miles round trip!), and that I have the option of riding my bike or walking to work (which I do relatively frequently), but holy crap, I will not miss the traffic.
The lack of public transportation. I believe that there are certain areas in LA that have better public transportation that others, but overall, it sucks. There is so much resistance to bringing the light rail to the West Side, too, because that will bring in more homeless people & poor people. Which brings me to #3:
The absolute glut of entitlement, materialism & idiocy (including the extreme overuse of plastic surgery) exhibited by the more privileged, and the desire exhibited by the less privileged to act entitled, materialistic & idiotic.
The pollution. The chemicals. This place is killing me. I really didn’t suffer much from allergies while growing up, but it’s getting really bad now, to the point where I can’t clean (okay, so that’s not too bad) or drink anything with sulfites (latest development which includes not only wine, but vermouth! which I use to make martinis! I don’t think you understand how awful this is…)
Late summer – August & early September to be exact. The weather the rest of the year is awesome, and I have no complaints, but August kicks my ass. Of course, it did in South Dakota, too, so I can’t complain too much.
The lack of affordable housing. The condos down the street are going for a minimum of $750,000. Homes in the neighborhood are similar. If I want to live in LA, either I’m going to spend over a $1/2 million (if I’m lucky, it’ll be under $1mil), live in a less than desirable neighborhood, or move to Palmdale (if you don’t know where that is – consider yourself lucky. It’s worse, and further away than the Valley!)
Lack of bike lanes. There are so few bike lanes in this city, and the drivers aren’t good at honoring them anyway, so it’s kinda like suicide to road bike.
Lexus drivers. I have surveyed all drivers (informally, obviously) over the last 7 years, and most luxury car drivers are terrible drivers. Rolls & Bentley drivers are, for the most part, not awful, but Porsche, Lexus, Jag, MB, BMW, any fancy sports cars, & Cadillac drivers suck. Lexus drivers are the absolute worst, though. I think that when you buy a Lexus, you get a special dispensation allowing you to be a complete asshat on & off the road.
This city is really dirty. Even in the nicer, supposedly cleaner sections of town, it’s dirty. We keep having campaigns to “not trash California,” but I don’t think it’s working. I’ve never seen so much litter & trash in my life.
Lack of neighborhood – it’s so hard to find neighborhood stuff & friends & activities, because everyone is so spread out. People don’t work near where they live, and their friends don’t live in the vicinity, so no one does stuff together – we’re all too far away. I just want to have some nearby neighbors that I like, a bar that knows me, and a couple restaurants that know what I’m going to order before I do. I’ve had all of these things in LA, but not at the same time.
- 10.a. The sprawl. It takes so long to get anywhere. I was invited out for tacos & margaritas tonight, but because the taco event is in Long Beach, and I am in Brentwood (at work, not home), I couldn’t get there until after 8 (see points #1 & #2), at which time, many people are done eating their tacos.
I’m not sure if all of these concerns will be addressed by Portland. Some things I won’t know for sure until I get there (#10, for instance), but I’m positive that the cons of LA outweigh the pros of LA.
Again, I’m grateful that I had this experience. I wouldn’t trade my 7 years in LA for anything. For one thing, I met the architect, and that is definitely worth it. I grew up here – not in the “I changed from a child-shaped person to an adult-shaped person” sense – more in the “I figured out who I am and became a stronger, more independent woman & I like myself” way.