Tampa Bay and Los Angeles: Two Different Worlds

Just got back from Los Angeles where my wife and I visited our daughter.  Whenever people recognize you’re from Florida – must have been my Amelia Island sun cap – Californians want to ask what’s different or better about the two places.  It is reality you will face if you live in either of the two areas.

floridatraveler marina del rey

Marina Del Rey Hotel Is My Favorite LA Hotel

LA has a Mediterranean climate so summer is their dry season, but NOT this dry. California is in a long drought and everything is brown and people are trying to save water like they are living in Saudi Arabia.  The pools at the Getty Villa were waterless to encourage water saving.

Tampa Bay has a Subtropical climate so it rains during our summer, but NOT this much rain. El Nino has flooded the Florida West Coast with so much water my backyard resembles a lake.  I have heard frogs in my backyard for the first time in thirty years.

floridatraveler LAKE LEONARD

My Tampa Backyard Is A Summer Lake

Look at a map and note that LA is further north than all of Florida.  When I went down to Santa Monica Pier the water was a balmy 70 degrees – in Tampa Bay the Gulf beaches went a warm 84 degrees.  Last week neither place seemed to have good surf waves.

In LA it takes thirty minutes to do anything. Tampa Bay has traffic jams at rush hour. LA roads never seem to be empty and every other corner seems to have a driver with a death wish.

floridatraveler floridatrafficjam

Tampa Bay gets traffic jams when you want to get to WDW.

People in LA asked me how I can stand living in a state with hurricanes.  I remind them I usually have four to five days to leave town if a hurricane is heading toward your home.  How much time do you get with an earthquake?

floridatraveler hurricane

You Have Five Days To Get Out of Town

Driving around the LA area, I notice that rich people hide themselves on fancy houses hanging over a cliff  either over the Pacific Ocean or the Pacific Coast Highway.  Our rich hide in gated golf communities and manmade islands.

Don’t try to bounce a Florida orange – 90% are made for juice.  70% of California’s oranges are for peeling.

floridatraveler flaoranges

Florida’s Finest Is Thin Skinned

MONEY magazine just rated Tampa as the best big city in the Southeast, but clearly there is more money in LA than Tampa.  You have to have a lot of cash to live well in Los Angeles. Not so much Tampa.

One more thing.  It’s football season again, but don’t ask a person in LA how their team will do this year.  They don’t have one.  At least we Tampans have the Bucs.

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About floridatraveler

Historian and travel writer M. C. Bob Leonard makes the Sunshine State his home base. Besides serving as content editor for several textbook publishers and as college professor, he moderates the FHIC at www.floridahistory.org
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