Oh my, have I missed blogging!
Two weeks ago, I finally scratched Coachella off of my bucket list. Around this time last year, I gifted myself with tickets to Weekend 2 of this infamous music festival as a graduation gift.
I flew into California on April 19th with my best friend, Justine. For the first two days of my trip, I stayed in Los Angeles. It was my second time there and being that this time around it was planned, I actually really got to enjoy LA. I stayed with my Godmother, so I didn’t really have to worry about any extra expenses which was a relief because … Coachella is no joke.
The first day we got there, we decided to go to Venice Beach. The Venice Beach strip actually reminded my a lot of the Miami Beach strip (just a lot shorter) and of Manhattan because along the strip there were so many people hustling and trying to make money which I really respected. There was a lot of local artists, musicians, etc. My friend and I both got henna done – I was happy about that until … it only lasted for 2 days.
I also met a really sweet man who designed jewelry … and he was Jamaican so you know I had to support <3.
However, I think my favorite part of Venice Beach was this Native American store that we came across. If you guys don’t know by now … I am obsessed with learning about new cultures so seeing the Native American art and clothing and designs really intrigued me.
When we got to the end of the strip, we saw what looked like an amusement park. So we kept walking. Little did we know, we were walking to Santa Monica. When we got to the amusement park, it was closing. We were a little bummed out BUT it was still a good walk and we took tons of pictures and videos. We continued exploring a little before heading back to my Godmothers house.
The next day .. which was 4/20 … well we did what just about anyone does on 4/20! It was actually cool because Marijuana is legal in California. So they have these little corner stores where you basically just go in and order your weed. I’m talking gummy bears, hot cheetos, lollipops … all infused with the good ole herb.
The following day we headed to Indio Valley, which is where Coachella is. The ride there wasn’t too bad, we ended up taking Amtrak and a bus. It was about a 2 1/2 hour ride in total. When we got there we had to wait a little because our other friend whose name was on the hotel check in hadn’t arrived in Cali yet. No worries though, we stayed by the pool, tanned a little bit and waited for her.
Side Bar: The hotel wasn’t my favorite. Being that we paid so much money for the hotel, Coachella tickets and airfare .. it was kind of annoying that the hotel food was so pricey. I mean we didn’t even get complimentary breakfast bro. Of the overpriced food that they did have, there wasn’t much to cater to non meat eaters like myself which added on to my annoyance. And there wasn’t much around us .. except for a Walgreens so we couldn’t go out and stock the hotel room.
The 22nd is when the real fun began – the first day of Coachella ! Being that we were new to the whole Coachella scene .. I will say that Friday was my least favorite day. Only because we were kind of all over the place seeing as how we didn’t know what to expect. Because of this we didn’t see too many performances. We did see A$AP Rocky and some dude name G Eazy though lol. Oh! and it was at this exact moment that I realized allergies were going to kick my ass during Coachella.
That Saturday, was cool. That was everyone else’s favorite day lol. Ice Cube performed and brought out The Game and Guns N Roses performed too. I’ll be honest, I don’t really care about Guns N Roses but Ice Cube was pretty dope. This day went MUCH better because we went in with what we called our “Game Plan”.
*Arrive, Eat, Buy Water, Head to front of Stage*
That’s literally what we had to do to ensure we got good spots.
The final day .. DAY 3 was my favorite. We saw Sia perform, Major Lazor and Calvin Harris. Although, I will say Calvin Harris’s performance disappointed me. I couldn’t get to enjoy his performance at all because he is obsessed with fog machines. Like, HELLO … I can’t see you if all you keep doing is turning this damn fog machine on lol.
Sia’s performance however, was just AMAZING (especially her dancers) & Major Lazor gave me life. It’s no secret that Coachella is mostly for indie music and celebrates a lot of rock music with hints of rap here and there.. but Major Lazor came through with something for Caribbean people to enjoy which of course … I did thoroughly appreciate. I remember, I just kept thinking to myself .. “look how influential Caribbean culture is .. specifically Jamaican culture”. I mean even Calvin Harris had a little reggae segment!
What I also loved about Coachella was being able to hear and appreciate bands that I wouldn’t have known otherwise. My two new favorite bands are Chvrches, which is this awesome Scottish band and right out of Brooklyn a band called Matt & Kim.
All in all, I loved Coachella. Would I do it again? I don’t know .. maybe if I got V.I.P tickets because honestly, pushing through crowds .. wasn’t fun and isn’t my thing. But the experience was a beautiful one. I’m definitely glad I went.