Los Angeles, you’ve won my heart.
Despite the frequency you get bagged on by those who live outside your borders (and even more so by those who reside within your borders!), you are a class act.
You’ve exposed me to new tastes and flavors. Bibimbap, boereks, pad kee mao, burrito mojado and boba. Some of the best and worst coffee I’ve ever tasted.
You’ve given me an appreciation for cultures, languages, and people groups from across the world. Where I previously heard unfamiliar noises and sounds, now I hear Armenian, Thai, Korean, Chinese, Tagalog. Beautiful languages spoken by our beautiful neighbors – distinct and unique in the everydayness of Angeleno life.
You’ve shown me the beauty of well-constructed buildings and the redemption possible with the crumbling walls of poorly-constructed buildings. From city centers and pop-up shops to subversively-scrawled poetic prophecies. You’ve shown me that graffiti can be art, that abandoned pallets cry out to be repurposed, and that place-making is a necessary and holy calling.
You are iconic, full of images and symbols. We’ve lived in the shadows of your fame, seeing both the beauty and the brokenness and learning to live and love in the midst of it all.
You are a city of lost boys and a city of dreamers, but you are also a city in which dreams become reality. You are the city where many of our dreams – for community, for family, for a neighborhood – took root and blossomed.
Los Angeles, you’ve been home and, for that, I’m grateful.