A couple of months ago, I attended a New Years Eve celebration in Downtown Los Angeles. While I was skeptical at first because I am unfamiliar with the area, it ended up being an awesome experience and something that I would definitely do again. Entire blocks of the downtown area had been cordoned off to allow the crowds to move as they pleased throughout the different areas of the event. Different sections of the city were decorated with different themes, with stages playing everything from traditional Hispanic music to alternative rock. It gave me an interesting perspective on the city, as streets normally packed with traffic were now empty and well lit.
During this event I was able to fully experience the open nature of Los Angeles that we have discussed in class. Although some of the buildings are large and densely packed, the areas we were in throughout the night felt open to the air. Even when the crowds grew, the sense of claustrophobia that I would have expected in an urban setting were never present at all.
It was a beautiful evening, and although it got cold as the night wore on, I was still comfortable in just a sweatshirt and jeans, with California’s climate being a huge part of the reason that was possible. Seeing the way people in other places such as New York on the very same night made me extremely aware of how lucky we are to live in the climate of Southern California. Overall the experience made me feel much more a part of Los Angeles and its culture than I usually do in my day to day life.