Friday, August 27, 2010
My Trip to Florence/Normandie
Tonight I took my girlfriend to South Central Los Angeles. She is from San Diego and wanted to see South Central. I wanted to go to Florence and Normandie - the site of the infamous beating of Reginald Denny during the L.A riots. I took the 10 east freeway and I exited on Normandie and I went south. I was a little bit apprehensive because South Central has a violent history. But I wanted to see how much things have changed since the riots.
A simple rule of thumb to know you are approaching South Central is the street numbers begin to increase. I passed by 25th street,44th street,56th street etc. I was in South Central. One of the first things I noticed is that the streets get darker as you approach SC. The streets are less well lit than Downtown Los Angeles. There are many that walk the street. There are many food vendors as well, especially taquerias and Salvadorean restaurants.
There is lots of action. People are hustling on street corners, there is tons of traffic, and there is an air of tension that I feel there. People are on guard. I was.
The other eerie thing about South Central is that just about every block has a church or a liquor store. One comedian says that they both serve a purpose - to escape. I can see why. The infrastructure in SC is horrible. They are lacking resources. The parks get taken over by gangs and I didn't see one library in my trip. I made a u-turn and went back home. As the street numbers got smaller, the streets got brighter and I relaxed a bit.