As the intercom turns on and I hear the voice of the Captain telling us we’re getting ready to land, my heart does a series of summersaults. This is it. In 30 minutes we would be landing in the city of Angels. I was embarking on the biggest, life changing adventure and all I could think about was “Hope there’s a Target nearby.”
The decision to move was fueled 60% the entertainment industry, 25% a chance to establish my independence, and 15% rebellion. Having always been “the good child” I knew that moving to Los Angeles defied my folks’ wish for me to graduate college, find a good Eritrean husband, and produce as many children as was humanly possible. Every girls dream right? Wrong! I craved more!! I wanted to run the world, I wanted to eat life, I wanted to explore a new city, but mostly I wanted to entertain! I figured everything could be accomplished if I just achieved that last goal. So, I rented an apartment online, bought a one way ticket, kissed everyone goodbye and left. I felt energized! I felt empowered! I felt invincible! The feeling was so great and lasted me most of my flight. I’m brought back to reality as the intercom once again goes off and the Captain informs us it’s a crisp 65 degrees in LA that night.
As with anything, being in LA was about finding my placement. It was rough in the beginning, I felt I had to shed the Minnesota nice and put on a tougher shield. The unbalance was eating away at my soul and causing me to be the worst version of myself I’d ever seen. Moving back home seemed like the only way to rectify my situation. I was working retail, I didn’t have a car, I lived 3 in a 2-bedroom to save on rent…nothing was adding up. I was just about to give up when one day I saw it! A Warner Bros. production truck pulled into a side street. I looked ahead and what I saw lit me up like a child at Disneyland (the other plus to So. Cal), cameras, lights, wires or every shape and size, and so many people! I had walked right onto a filming location. I sat in awe as I saw the director call “action” and everyone but the actors were silent as the grave. The scene went on without a hitch and as the director yelled “cut” and the people around me started bustling to prepare for their next scene, I was reminded. Reminded why I moved to Los Angeles, reminded where my passion lied, reminded who I was just 2 years before.
I am now coming up on my 5 year anniversary. Moving to LA was the best wor
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st decision I have ever made. Here’s to another 5 years: salute!!
More Baby Jade (aka: Bethlehem Awate) on the way…