What was pitched as as a trip for tapas in Topanga turned to a treacherous trial of trying to squeeze my sedan in a safe spot the side of a steep steep
slope two blocks away from the party.
The view was amazing, the company was great and the food was fantastic, so much so that the three pounds I just lost returned with a vengeance.
Getting out of my car, however, required a firm understanding of physics, cleats and a leap of faith as I sprung from my 45 degree angled seat, braced for landing on the soft, gravely shoulder and scampered across the street so that I didn’t get squashed by cars flying around the blind curve.
And while I will rarely if ever turn down an invite for Spanish appetizers, I did wonder, what’s the etiquette when you live in a place where parking a car is next to impossible. The house had a small driveway–enough for the family’s car–but that was it. The neighborhood was situated in the middle of a mountain pass, so there were no businesses nearby with parking lots available to borrow. There was hardly any shoulder on the road and what shoulder there was was taken up by the sharp rise of a slope.
In LA, we have plenty of areas like this. There’s mountains like Topanga where you can slide off to your death without too much effort. Permit heavy areas like West Hollywood, where even with a guest pass, you sometimes need to bring an extra pair of shoes for the half mile hike you will inevitably take to your buddy’s pad, Hollywood proper where irresponsible city planning has led to parking fees hovering somewhere around $2/fifteen minutes, Downtown where the proximity of decent area to skid row is unsettling or Hancock Park and Silverlake type areas that are just so popular that even with a decent amount of street space. Though, I guess there’s always the 101 and 405 where lots of people find places to park.
What do you think? Should invites to places like this come with warnings/suggestions? A valet? Or maybe it’s just a clever way to invite solitude?