Over the last few weeks I’ve made some pretty big changes.
I moved from an apartment in one of the busiest neighborhoods in Hollywood to a home on the side of a hill in one of the most quiet and remote areas of Los Angeles. I’m calling it ‘The Purple Sky’ because of the amazing sunsets.
Hanging out on the back patio on my birthday at The Purple Sky.
But before we get into all that, let’s talk about leaving the apartment.
The Glass Cage In The Sky
Six years ago I was living in the Hollywood Hills over the Sunset Plaza. I had a great little house with an enormous view, a nice backyard and a big wooden deck with a sunken hot tub in it.
Waking up in the hills, and seeing that view every day was life changing for me. There is something about looking off into the distance and seeing miles and miles of hills, birds, buildings, trees, clouds and sky that makes you feel better.
Unfortunately the house went up for sale and I had to move quickly. So an affiliate friend of mine invited me to come check out the place he was living, a highrise apartment building called the Sunset & Vine Tower.
The 20+ story building stood right at the center of one of the busiest intersections in Hollywood, an area I’d lived in before, an area that I hated and finally ditched to move to the hills.
The building looked awesome, I had a few friends living there. The apartments were smaller, but each one had 20 foot walls of glass and the views were i n s a n e.
So even though I knew I didn’t like the neighborhood, I moved in, telling myself I’d stay there for a year until I found another peaceful spot in the hills.
The first year my lease came up for renewal I did a quick scan of the houses for rent in the hills. I decided that it would be better to stay this year – but I’d leave the next year.
Then five more years went by.
When the lease came up for renewal this year the rent increased so much that the apartment no longer made sense. When I’d moved in I had the best deal in town, now I could live in a decent sized house for the same price as the small apartment. So I went on the search.
After looking at 15–20 different houses I found one that ticked almost all of my boxes.
- Privacy? Check
- View? Check
- Extra room? Check
- Peace and Quiet? Check, Check
So I put in my 30 days notice, hired a moving service that employed musicians and threw away, gave away or boxed up everything that I owned.
The move was easy. I think we did it in less than 3 hours. That’s one upside of being a minimalist… when you move, the job is really, really easy.
After the rock n roll movers left (one of them is the current drummer for Orgy) I looked around the new house and couldn’t believe how easy and painless the move was.
I’d been putting this off for years. Now, here I was standing in a big house that hangs off a hill with a view that makes you dizzy. It took a minute to sink in that this was home. And as it sank in, I felt better and better.
What’s the big difference?
- Privacy. When you live in an apartment building at Sunset and Vine, there is almost no way to be completely alone outside your home. You see people in the halls, on the elevators, at the front desk, at the pool and in the neighborhood. As soon as I walked out the front door of the apartment building I was surrounded by people… walking, talking, screaming, horns honking, traffic jams, helicopters, fire engines, police sirens… it was madness. Now I walk outside it’s dead quiet. There are a few lizards and birds running around… and every once and a while, a neighbor walks by with their dog. It’s great.
- The View. The apartment had an amazing view of the city. The house has an amazing view of the canyon. The canyon view is much more relaxing for me. And I can still see a lot of Studio City as well. I get the best of both worlds. And now, instead of looking at the view, I can walk out the back door and be inside the view. It’s a totally different experience being able to walk directly out onto the side of a hill. Big improvement.
- Outdoors. The neighborhood where the apartment building stood was so busy and crazy that I stopped going outside. Everytime I went for a walk in that neighborhood I’d be yelled at by a dozen homeless people for money or honked at by cars that wanted me to get out of their way. Here, I am able to walk directly out of my bedroom onto the side of a hill where no humans besides me are allowed to be. It’s awesome. I spend way more time outside now, and my skin has a nice shade of brown to prove it.
- Danger. Sunset and Vine is a dangerous area to live in. They won’t tell you that as you lay down $3,000 – $12,000 a month for your apartment there, but you’ll find out soon enough on your own. Almost every day I had a ‘weird’ situation with homeless people. They were everywhere, screaming, cursing, asking for money, throwing things into the street. It was like a zombie movie, and it got worse every year. Every year or two there would be at least one murder, stabbing, shooting or someone would get killed while walking across the street. Right now the scariest thing I’ve encountered are blue belly lizards in the backyard and I’ve heard some coyotes fights out in the hills.
- Lifestyle. One of the things I liked about the old neighborhood was that anything I wanted was within walking distance. Sushi, movie theater, gym, grocery store, vegan food, pillows, ice cream… you name it I could walk 5–10 minutes and get it. At the new place I have to drive 5–6 minutes down the hill to access Ventura Blvd, where I can find all those things as well. The differences are that Ventura Blvd. has plenty of open street parking (unheard of in Hollywood) and when I get sick of the noise, I can escape up the hill into silence. It’s so much better.
Overall I’m really happy with the move and I needed a change in a big way.
Out for a walk in the neighborhood.
I’ve been taking some time to get things setup here. The wifi took a week or so to get right (AT&T bad, Spectrum good) and I’m slowly adding things as needed.
Today is the first day I felt the push to write a blog post, and I bet Youtube is going to get an update really soon as well. (I get asked about it every day)
For now, I just wanted to say hello again and document what’s been going on. I hope you’re doing well. And if you’ve been wondering about me – now you know.
Have a great day and I will most definitely See You In the Future.