GLP – Culture of West US

24 Jul

By Zhang Jiawei

This weekend I paid a visit to my relative who lives in Los Angeles. It was a fantastic experience to explore the place and culture of western coast of US. The 2-day trip impressed me with the culture diversity over a country. The unique transportation system, comfortable climate and food diversity forms the culture of California.

Transportation system
The transportation system in California plays an important role. It’s very different from east US, people from west US have a weak concept of public transportation. Most people prefer to drive on their own than taking trains or even others’ rides. This unique culture is due to the fact that Los Angeles owns a large number of freeways with a small number of train systems. My relative has been living there for 18 years. It was 3 years ago when he changed his job that he found out that there was one train station nearby his home. On the freeway of west US, there is a special line on the leftmost called car pool. Car pool is used for cars to transport more than 1 passenger (including driver). It is a transportation priority which is used by government to encourage people to have one vehicle driving with as many people as they can. Most people of Los Angeles drive on their own, which means that most of the cars we see on the freeway only have the driver inside.

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I met one of my friends in San Diego, he told me that initially he was deciding between 2 universities, either UCSD (University of California, San Diego) or UIUC.  Eventually he took the suggestion of his senior that California has the most comfortable climate over the entire US. So now he does not regret his decision. My relative also told me that for all the immigrants to US, 70% will eventually come to California, mostly because of the comfortable climate. As a state nearby ocean side, the temperature of California varies slightly from summer to winter and it is also dry. In 1 year, over 300 days are sunny days.

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Silver Beach

There is a famous beach in San Diego called silver beach. The beach is named as the sand is silver in colour. The cool sea water, sea plants and some sea birds make it a great place for vacation. Beside the beach, there is a famous hotel which actually changed the pace of human race. In the movie “The King’s Speech”, it stated that the brother of the king gave up the throne because he encountered a married woman, and this hotel is the place which witnessed their romance.

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Boston is famous for its lobsters; Washington DC is well-known of its blue crabs. When I asked what is special about California, he told me, nothing special. California shares a great diversity of food.

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Working Culture

My relative took me to the downtown of Los Angeles on Sunday. When we arrived, I was really shocked by the silence of the place. All the skyscrapers just stood here with almost nobody inside. The downtown really did not look like a downtown. My relative told me that because it was the weekend, there were no one working here.

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