Feeling Stuck in Los Angeles

Laying on the sofa at mom’s this morning, listening to the sounds of the ever-increasing traffic from the street, I’m feeling stuck. I’ve been in the Los Angeles area since June and this being stationary is getting on my nerves.

I’d hoped to have been gone by now, but my mom asked me to stay longer to help out around the house, and my vehicle died. Sadly, I don’t see many things I can do around the house because of the clutter. There are things everywhere, and not a single surface is clear of stuff. Until some of the stuff gets picked up and put away, there isn’t much I can do. The only person who can declutter the house is my mom. I have no idea where anything goes, assuming it even has a place to begin with. I also have no idea what’s important or not. In short, until my mom picks up and puts stuff away, I can’t clean.

As for my vehicle dying, it blew its engine; again. The last time the engine blew, it was $6,000 to have a rebuilt engine installed, so I’ve been down this road before. This time around, I don’t have the money to drop another engine into the car, so off the car went to a pick-and-pull place for a whopping $500. Let’s just say that $500 doesn’t go far towards getting another vehicle.

Oh well, I agreed to stay longer, so awhile longer I stay.

I can stay stationary for periods, as I often boondock for weeks at a time, but my preference is to be on the move. I’m sure part of these feelings I am experiencing about being stationary are related more to being in a major city than being stationary. Being in a major city is not something I like, enjoy, or handle well. There are reasons I prefer being in the country or out backpacking in the backcountry, away from cities and major population areas.

I simply can’t handle most aspects of city life; the people, the traffic, the congestion, the noise, the pollution, and most everything associated with city life. Shoot, I had three panic attacks just driving into Los Angeles from the desert!

I, personally, don’t see how people handle city life, especially someplace like Los Angeles. I am not a city person, and I could never live someplace like LA. There’s more to it than the reasons listed above too. The cost of living in Los Angeles is crazy. For example, gas costs a lot more here than anywhere else I’ve been. It cost me a minimum $20 extra per tank of gas in California, but since the car is now gone, I guess that point is mute.

Camping in California is expensive with few places to boondock (unless you are in the desert), and state parks are costly too. Everything about California is expensive, which is why I rarely venture into this state.

Sigh, I guess I’ve been spoiled by places like New Mexico and Arizona where things are considerably less expensive. As one who lives out of my car and on the road for months at a time, I am extremely sensitive to gas prices. On the bright side, avocados are cheap here compared to most places; that’s a plus, right?

The Freedom of Being Vehicle Free

There are a few advantages to being vehicle free; no gas, no insurance, no maintenance, or other vehicle-related expenses. Freeing up that money opens the door to other activities I couldn’t do with the monthly overhead of a vehicle, namely a thru-hike of the Appalachian Trail (AT). 

Since I find myself without a vehicle or the expenses of owning one, I have decided to instead focus on doing thru-hikes. The first thru-hike I am going to do it the AT this coming March. After that, I’ll decide what I want to do. Hiking the AT will give me from five to six months to think things through and decide where to go once I’m finished. 

Oh well, I now have a plan in mind, a date set to leave Los Angeles, and the next five to six months dedicated to something I love doing, namely hiking. Now, if only March would get here already!

About Gerard Saint-Pierre

I'm a long-distance hiker, writer, photographer, environmentalist, & digital nomad. I'm thru-hiking the Appalachian Trail NOBO starting in March to help raise awareness about mental health. Come and follow along as I blog about the good, the bad, and the ugly aspects of a thru-hike while battling depression and PTSD.

View all posts by Gerard Saint-Pierre →

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.