Departing LA today was fun. We had googled a selection of Walmart stores located North of the city as we needed to stop by one to purchase important camping equipment for our upcoming two nights in the Yosemite National park, followed by a week in the Black desert city. Finally buying stuff at Walmart felt like biting the bullet, yes, but trust me, we tried for days to find second hand equipment on Craigslist first.
We found our store in Van Nuys on our way out of town, and already there we felt so far away from LA the way we’d got to know it. The area seems to be inhabited by a massive group of Latin Americans, yet due its urban history also represents a hot spot for many young professionals. Driving through the area however, most avenues offer sights like densely situated small houses, many of whom have a flag hanging high in the garden. Part from that you’ll see shopping malls, car shops, areas of trailer houses and a bunch of cute little men with their cowboy hats on strolling the streets.
We started to feel like we were in America.
An hour later on our way to Fresno, our 3g stopped working. Soon we had no service at all. So much for T-mobiles’ promises of working anywhere in the US. For another two hours we cruised up highway 5 surrounded by a flat and mostly uninhabited landscape, before it got dark and hundreds of signs of fast food chains and motels were the only lights that illuminated our way.
Though I dislike branding overall, I’ve loved my first US road trip experience in which my old dream of staying in a typical motel now is to be fulfilled.
Here from a gas station close to Fresno. How authentic!
Next to it we spotted a motel and went to check out their vacancy. Nobody was in the reception however, yet a group of truck drivers had thrown a party and welcomed us to join them. Unfortunately due to our tight travel schedule we had to reject their offer.
However, a little later we found the perfect motel downtown in Fresno.
We’re only stopping by here to get some sleep, just like everybody else does in this city – on their way to, or from – Yosemite National Park. I’m so excited to finally be on a road trip, and so excited to be going to Yosemite tomorrow!