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dmway

"Desert sky, dream beneath the desert sky..."

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On 12/19/2019 at 9:36 PM, dmway said:

We didn't bet a single penny there and absolutely loved it!

I had to bet ten bucks when I was in Las Vegas.  I did it so a friend would be quiet about me not gambling.  I was pissed because I could've bought a cd.  We did a circular route on that trip.  I'd never been.  Driving through the desert, at night, between Las Vegas and Califonia is an amazing experience.  One can see the moon forever.  Add U2 on several prerecorded mix tapes.  I was driving and my trip companion was sleeping so no talking turned it into something very special.  I'm glad you had a great trip. 

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, Manohlive said:

I had to bet ten bucks when I was in Las Vegas.  I did it so a friend would be quiet about me not gambling.  I was pissed because I could've bought a cd.  We did a circular route on that trip.  I'd never been.  Driving through the desert, at night, between Las Vegas and Califonia is an amazing experience.  One can see the moon forever.  Add U2 on several prerecorded mix tapes.  I was driving and my trip companion was sleeping so no talking turned it into something very special.  I'm glad you had a great trip. 

That’s a great story of your own! Yes, the scenery there is indescribably awesome (it’s nice to use that word properly and not in a jokey OTT 80’s way).

There are two more days to be recounted - as I told Max, the 6th is especially U2-ey. 😎

 

Edited by dmway

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14 hours ago, dmway said:

There are two more days to be recounted

Oh gosh.  I'm sorry.  I got confused.  I thought you were finished.  Duh.  I would not have added what I did, had I known you were still telling your tale. My memory/comment was inspired by it-not a need of mine.  Eeegads.   Please pardon me and do continue. 

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6 hours ago, Manohlive said:

Oh gosh.  I'm sorry.  I got confused.  I thought you were finished.  Duh.  I would not have added what I did, had I known you were still telling your tale. My memory/comment was inspired by it-not a need of mine.  Eeegads.   Please pardon me and do continue. 

No problem - other people responded mid-tale as well. All comments welcome at any time. 
 

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Posted (edited)

Nov. 5 - Beverly Hills, the "Hollywood" sign, and the Sunset Strip (and surrounding areas)

As you can tell from the title, this was another very active day, the 2nd-to-last full day of our vacation.

I had never wanted to see Beverly Hills when I was younger. It just struck me as a place where very rich people went/lived to spoil themselves with their idle whims and desires for overpriced possessions. Now, to a degree, there is at least a little truth to that - if you want to satisfy such an aim, Beverly Hills is the perfect place to do so. However, you know what? It is also a very lovely place with nice people in it too. We saw really amazing things there - for example, a tree that could have come directly from one of Tolkien's books, lovely public artwork, and gaudy (and yet stunning) storefronts.

The Hollywood sign. If you want to see it for yourself up close, be ready to do some walking. The locals passed very restrictive parking regulations anywhere close to the sign. So, if you want to avoid a parking ticket, park a good distance away and walk (it's all steeply uphill too - be sure you are in half-decent shape first). If you want to drive right to it (you can't park at the park near the sign itself anymore - the park itself is closed), just type "The Hollywood Sign" into your sat nav, and you will be guided straight there (yes, seriously - that's how we go there).

The Sunset Strip. If you want to find the famous music clubs The Rainbow, The Roxy, and The Whisky-a-Go-Go, they are all pretty close together on Sunset. (U2 played at Palladium on the October tour; otherwise, they always played in an arena there even in the early days). Doug Weston's Troubadour (as featured in the movie "Rocketman"; it's the venue where Elton John got his American debut) is just up the street and almost back in Beverly Hills again. We even got a look at old Route 66 signs - a lot of LA's current streets were once part of the old Route 66. The famous Chateau Marmont hotel is also on Sunset (many famous acts stayed there - Led Zeppelin had several notorious stays there). Pictures:

 

 

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Edited by dmway
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Nov. 6 (pt. 1) - the last full day in LA (but LA still had a lot to give us yet)

One of the most significant days of our U2-oriented American Southwest adventure. I'll split this into two parts because we managed to squeeze in a lot again.

We spent one final time looking at and taking pictures of the Walk Of Fame (we stayed very close to Hollywood Avenue) - we found diverse stars as those for: Phil Collins, Chris Pratt, Javier Bardem, Mark Hamill, Tom Cruise, Eddie Murphy, Johnny Depp, Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, Tom Hanks, Paul Newman, Miles Davis, Stevie Wonder, Oliver Stone, Alfred Hitchcock, Roger Moore, Drew Barrymore, Elton John, William Shatner, and many, many more. (I would give photographic evidence of some of these below; however, since these were shot in portrait orientation and not in landscape, the weird iPhone glitch is rotating the images by 90 degrees - I hope this will be fixed soon.)

We also found that The Magic Castle was very close to where we stayed. Did you know that Hollywood had a magic castle? Well, see for yourself - it has a hotel and a club. Practitioners of magic in LA like to sightsee locally and party down afterwards in the same place apparently...

We also found LA's famous City Hall. If you have seen LA on TV and/or the movies, you have seen a shot or two of this very famous building. Pictures:

 

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Edited by dmway
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Nov. 6 (pt. 2) - the location where the streets have no name (with street names!), and a hotel that has seven figures attached to it...

And one of the best parts for last...

Our sat nav guided us to the area where the "Streets" video was shot (no, it wasn't in the sat nav as a location like the "Hollywood" sign; we plugged in the intersection where it was shot). This is right in downtown LA - no wonder the cops were a bit annoyed that U2 shot a video here. (It's also not far from City Hall, so the cops wouldn't have had to drive very far to hassle the band.)

We were looking for a place to park and were a bit uncertain; however, providence came to the rescue again in a big way. We were driving right next to the location, eager for a place to park. We suddenly saw a humble Mexican-American man waving a little orange flag to guide people into his parking structure. I got a feeling that this was the right place to go (IMHO, Mom was at work again). So, I pulled into this little parking structure on East 7th Street and found a spot to park. We were happy just to park here and walk to the intersection to get a good look at it. However, we got an extra gift - this particular place was the absolute perfect place to look upon the actual rooftop where U2 played their mini-show on that famous day. We had no idea that the vantage point from this simple garage had just the best view you could hope to have (short of being on the actual rooftop itself).

Another added bonus! As you may know, it was from this video shoot that Bono saw the famous sign that led to a movie script of his ("The Million Dollar Hotel", of course). They shot this movie in two different locations on the same street, using the Rosslyn Hotel (which we drove past, but didn't stop at) and the Hotel Cecil. The latter is right next door to the "Streets" video shoot location. It was great to see both places so close together.

Amusing side story (which I promise I am not making up) - as we walked to look more closely at the Hotel Cecil, a guy came out of the lobby who looked just like one of the unusual characters that was in the film, and he asked us if we were there for the film shoot. Both of us looked at each other quite amazed. We said we weren't and continued down the street. He followed us telling us more about this alleged shoot, until another person walked by and then he started telling him about the film shoot. I'm pretty sure there was no film shoot. Bono captured the irregular nature of many of the natives of this area very well in his film; the people there are really just like the characters in the film (which is sad in some ways because, both in the film and in real life, many of these people were/are homeless). Pictures:

 

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Edited by dmway
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Here is another angle of the rooftop:

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Edited by andryu2
Correction
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And of the humble narrators of the thread by the “Hollywood” sign.

 

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On 12/16/2019 at 8:47 PM, dmway said:

Hello all! 😎

Back in late October/early November, I made a trip to across the country to parts of the American Southwest that I had not visited before. A fellow U2 fan and good friend decided to go on vacation to Los Angeles. Las Vegas and San Diego were also mentioned as part of a potential itinerary. Since I had never been to that part of the country as well, we decided to have a collective vacation.

As I thought about the trip and where we might go, San Diego seemed like a bit of an outlier - we didn't really have enough time to go there. We only had 11 days, so vacationing while employing a somewhat circular route was the most efficient way to do things. Since we were U2 fans as well, I had a better idea for a third place to go. I ran the idea by my friend, and it was welcomed enthusiastically.

So, we offer this humble illustrated travelogue 1) to honor the best vacation either one of us have ever had, 2) to give those who may want to do the same kind of trip the catalyst to go themselves, and 3) to honor the band who inspired it all. Since we were in this part of the country, our U2 adventures had a distinctive JT flavor - of course, this is only appropriate during the year where NZ/AUS/(south)eastern parts of Asia got their JT anniversary tour. "In God's Country" really would serve as a good theme song for the whole trip (thus, the title of the thread).

 

I quoted the first post above to remind those who tuned in a while ago that I have been refining the days of our vacation over the past few weeks - so, it might be worth looking back to see if I added some images since the last time you tuned in.

I also wanted to take this opportunity to thank @mich40 for giving me information in advance of the trip that helped make the vacation as eventful as it turned out to be. She provided three stories in particular that made our visit to Las Vegas, Death Valley, and the 2nd half of our LA stay more successful and enjoyable. I will pass those along now to everyone who wishes to have them in case they ever want to make a similar journey and/or just to have more background on some of the U2-related elements of each place.

 

Las Vegas area where the ISHFWILF video was shot:

https://www.u2songs.com/videos/i_still_havent_found_what_im_looking_for

 

The (former) location of the Joshua Tree:

https://johnandkatiesrvhoneymoon.com/2017/01/08/in-gods-country-where-to-find-u2s-joshua-tree/

 

Where U2 shot the "Streets" video:

https://diffuser.fm/u2-where-the-streets-have-no-name-video/

 

Our images and descriptions of the first two are on the previous page; the "Streets" video site is above.

I also have to thank @andryu2 for being the best traveling companion a person and fellow U2 fan could ever have. We were fortunate enough to spend Christmas and New Year's together as well in the Northeast US, and visit #3 is not too far into the future - stay tuned... 😎

 

 

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