We arrived for our overnights to layover in LA at about noon on Saturday. After a slightly confusing, hot, and tiring bus ride and one block walk to our hostel, we realized that even after downsizing our backpack loads at Dad’s house, we had over packed – especially Sam! Carrying our heavy-as-lead backpacks into the Venice Beach Hostel we were greeted by a beach-bummette from Moscow of all places, working the front desk (which was, in fact, a kitchen counter. The hostel was a very cool beach house filled with posters of Sublime, Bob Marley, and other icons of music and pop culture. There was a slight issue with our booking as we had booked one bed – which they took to mean one person. Once all was settled, we ventured off, in search of food, medical marijuana, and coffee! The first stop was a lovely vegan Thai restaurant called East Wind Thai Vegan – absolutely delicious! Unfortunately Sam was a bit over-hungry and could only eat half her food – leftovers for later. Next up was the search for a legendary Los Angeles dispensary. After walking for what seemed like hours we found one, but unfortunately they would not honour Sam’s Canadian medical card. Oh well, worth the try I suppose. The fella working the gate was a friendly Latin American with that cool LA style – slicked back hair with a well trimmed moustache – looking good slick! The search for coffee was long, arduous and unsuccessful. Arriving back at the hostel, we were tempted to just hit the hay, but resolved to check out Venice Beach instead. Good choice, as we got there right at sunset and it was absolutely breathtaking! How on Earth did we get here!?!? As we walked along the beach we saw the biggest waves we’ve ever seen (average for them I’m sure), a Baywatch-style lifeguard patrol shutting down for the night, and a ton of people (homeless and otherwise) night fishing off the pier. Walking back up the strip, we bought some of the most delicious coffee ever from a very cheerful lady who declared that she’d been “waiting for a couple of smiling faces like ours all night” and “just hold on a minute baby, I’ll be right back with your coffee”. That African-American dialect just enamours me to no end! We also stopped for some authentic LA based New York pizza – could be top 3 pizza of all time! What a great night! Back at the hostel, after repacking our bags and some wise and un-wise jettisoning of luggage, we passed right out. I only woke up a few times in the middle of the night, wondering where I was.. Next stop, Hawaii!