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Above it all in L.A. traffic

So cool, SoCal: On a city bus, a tourist can let somebody else worry about driving.
So cool, SoCal: On a city bus, a tourist can let somebody else worry about driving. (Necee Regis)

"See? You gotta ask!" she calls over her shoulder as the bus ambles down the road.

I'm not sure whether she's joking with me, or not. Off the bus, I snap a photo of myself to see just how bad I look. Tired, but a decade older? Horrors. I walk till I find another mocha ice-blended coffee drink, then stroll the pier, the beach and the Third Street Promenade shopping district till the sun sinks low.

The bus back to my friend's house idles on Second Street, waiting to begin its southeast journey. By now I'm thoroughly weary from walking, window-shopping and my experiment with bus-hopping.

"Ooh. Cushy seats!" says a woman with long gray hair who boards a minute later. She settles in with her packages, stroking the padded seat like a cat, so pleased and happy, as if someone had just given her a box of dark chocolate mousse tarts. And seeing her so happy at such a little thing makes me happy, too.

travel@washpost.com

Regis is a Boston-based travel and food writer and a founding member of the literary blog Beyond the Margins.


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