I arrived in LA yesterday morning for the National Arts Marketing Project Conference. Exhausted after one of the final Song airlines flights, I had to laugh as the crew thanked us for flying with them, considering we had our choice of bankrupt airlines and tried to sell us pillows based on the premise that they would be worth twice as much on eBay in a week!
I was scared as hell to drive on the LA freeways, but I did and arrived safely at the hotel around 10:30 West Coast time...it was well after noon to me. Autumn had arrived the day before so thankfully I was able to check into the room and unpack. The Millenium Biltmore (one of the early homes of the Oscars) is a beautiful, if old, hotel. After unpacking, we jumped in my tiny rental car and drove to a backlot tour of Warner Brothers Studios. Cheesy, but we are from Orlando and wanted to see some touristy things. It was fun, but no shows or films were shooting so we had to settle for seeing Joel Silver and his entourage walking the lot. Later on Hollywood Blvd. I pointed out his star to Autumn. The highlight for me was getting to see Stars Hollow, home of the Gilmore Girls...but it kind of shattered the illusion for me.
Continuing on our touristy day in LA, we went to Hollywood Blvd. and happened on the red carpet for the Daytime Emmys. We saw Ellen, Alex Trebek, Harry Hamlin and Lisa Rena, Elmo and Oscar the Grouch. No Oprah. Darn. Then, we did the ultimate LA tourist thing. A tour of the stars homes. Yeah, yeah, I know. Tacky, but I loved it. Mostly because I love architecture, but that little element of who lives there was intriguing too. I kept wondering who lived NEXT to the stars... Autumn saw Sly Stallone walking from his car into his house. I missed it. We also saw the paparazzi parked outside of Tom Cruise's house dying to be the first to get a shot of his new daughter. Ewww.
Exhausted and jet lagged, we were asleep by 10...although in my defense it was 1 am to me and I had been up since 4 am! The conference began today and so far is well worth the trip. More about that later...