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Reisverslag Week 4 till 9
9 februari 2018
Week 4 till 9
I know its been a while since youve heard from me.1.5 month its been, or to be exact 6 weeks. And what a 6 weeks its been.
On one hand Ive really done a lot and have kept myself busy every single day.
Every day I made a lil turtle step forward. Steady but slowly, mostly slowly.... Things in this city dont go as quickly as you want them to go (or that I WANT them to go, Im not sure which one haha). I guess Im not the only one out here trying to achieve dreams... :P
January 2018,. The year of 2018, lets start with the beginning of the year. I wrote in my last blog that I had found an apartment..I ended up ‘trusting’ the person for taking my word once I shook his hand saying I wanted it and would pay him the deposit over the weekend, (as who trust a person by his word these days right? Nobody anymore I guess, call it naive, I call it doing what I say I would..), Long story short, I found out 4 days later that Ive lost the place. I bet someone offered him more money right on the doorstep or something,.... But thats past now. As it ended being the bestest thing that could have happened to me!! As those things mostly end up going, as long as we dont focus too long on the ‘why is this happening to me’ and just deal with the next steps we can do within our own power to make things happen again. When a door shots and you dont force them to reopen again and again and again no matter what, soo many new once open, and mostly they end up being better than the first door! And so did mine!
It definitely was a lil stressful right that moment, as I had one week left to find something before I had to say bye bye to my old room. But I ended up finding a room with the bestest roommate, one street behind the first apartment!
First of all I love my apartment, the location and it really feels like a home! I really feel so lucky with the place and how everything ended up working out. And its sooo much better, I have my own bedroom, completely nicely furnished, and my own bathroom! On top of that my roommate, Krista, is just the sweetest and funniest! She is an actress and the vibes in the house is always great. Its so nice to share my days with her everynight, or even go on adventure here and there together. I feel very very lucky.
She has been living in LA over 10 years, so even though she has a different profession, she knows the ‘entertainment industry’ very well, so she definitely helps me out here and there, especially when I feel compltely lost or overwhelmed about all the new things that come along my path.
On top of that there was no way we wouldnt get a long the day I found out, she makes THE SAME SOUNDS as me. Everyone who knows me knows the sounds I make in my sleep, or just during the day when my throat is itchie, if you dont I can tell you it sounds very similiar to a sealion. BUT GUESS WHAT. For the first time in my life (besides my uncle, but it runs in the family haha) Ive met someone who does the same thing! So you can imagine how great our sealion parties are daily in the house.
So yay I definitely cant complain about my home situation. It actually makes me very happy everytime I walk back into that door. Especially because in the evenings im home way more and earlier than Ive ever been in any other cities or with other jobs around the world, that its great to feel so comfortable and relax in the space I can call my own here.
Another BIG thing I definitly am SO PROUD of and SO HAPPY about is the fact that in less than 2 months I achieved two major goals! If it was up to me it would have happened even sooner, as i was restricted to quite some waiting here and there (or just some closed doors), BUT Ive signed with 2 AGENCIES! One for dancing and one for commercial. It was my plan and goal of course to do that as soon as it would be possible for me. But it doesnt always go so easy or quickly. So as my roommate says, its a massive achievement to achieve that within 2 months (while it could take some people months to maybe even years)! So yay!!! I mean, Im really living every day with the mindset, ‘ Ive got no time to waste, I came here to work!’ But its great to see things are falling in to place. Cause believe me, there happens enough or there are enough challanges to make you second guess everything you do or want to do anyway.
In LA its harder to find out about auditions, castings, opportunities and work etc if you are not signed with an agent. So it definitely has opened some new doors! It all got official these past 2 weeks, so theres been a massive weight that fell of my shoulders. Im not gonna lie, financialy its still a struggle, as nothing is still coming in and only things are going out, and again this place is everyhing but CHEAP!. But I have a lot of faith in the future now this has been finalized. But the life here is still cheaper and better managable than NYC. For exapmple talking about the prices of groceries or just the fact of being able to do groceries at every corner of the street is SO much better. So compared to my last time in NYC, I stil feel so spoiled and feel like Im living like a queen, even though I really am not, more like a real dancer trying to make it in LA haha.
Ive been very lucky in so many ways tho, that im not forgetting to be super grateful for! As finding a side job that would pay cash has been very hard (my visa is only for entertainment) and my plan was to make it work like I did in NYC, but LA thought different about that. But Ive found a babysitting address with two of the sweetest kids (2 girls, one of 1 and one of 3 years old). Besides all the love they give me everytime I see them, It also really helps being able to finance some groceries and danceclasses from the extra cashmoney.
Because of the finances, I decided to buy a bike what I mentioned already in my last blogpost. But of course my backtire had a whole in it without me knowing when I got it, so after a week, the tire was flat. Which ended up going into 4 weeks of me prosponing to fix it, as the only way to fix it would be me walking with that thing to the nearest bike store (minimum 1 hour) and spending loads of money that I didnt really have, yes everything to do with a bike here is expensive compared to home, as barely anyone has one. After spending in the long run these past weeks so much money on travels and the fact that I finally feel like I know my way around here in the Valley. I decided to fix my bike.
Unfortunalely that was eassier said than done. Ill give you the short version, just to make you aware of a typical dancerlife day here in LA. (The struggle can be real sometimes).
I looked up the closest bikestore and I had 2 options from the point that I was (my friend Valerie her house). I decided to walk for 1 hour to the store that was more towards my apartment instead of staying in her are. After 1 hour walk with a broken bike, there ends up not being a store at all where google said there would be. Just some garages of some houses that was listed on google as a store, but clearly nobody was there or bothered picking up the phone that google had attached to it.
So from that point I had the choice to walk all the way back to go back to my other bike store, option1, or to see if theres another bike store ‘around’. I choose to keep walking in a new direction, as the road would be less boring. After another 1.5 hour, so at that point 2.5 hour walk in about 26 degrees celcius (not that I had anything else todo that day, so no excuses, and I really wanted my bike to be fixt, so that helped the motivation), I ended up at bike store option 3.
Me walking in, probably looking like the walking sweaty dead, I basically bagged them to see if they can help me. As nice as they were, they told me my bike was a very old bike (probably the first one that made it over to America from Europe) and because of that my tire-size was a very uncommen size so they had nothing in store. OF COURSE...
So I brought out my acting skills and explained to them that Im literally by foot, dont have much money, and really need to get this fixt, but that I couldnt take another step. I asked about all options and they ended up feeling really sorry for me that they started to call around to all the bike stores in the Valley. (The valley is basically as big as Amsterdam it self, but its about 10 procent from the whole city Los Angeles).
After a few phone calls they ended up telling me that the store that could help me, would be my bike store OPTION 1 (if I only made a different descision earlier, but lets not waiste any time on the ‘what if’).
I was happy and sad at the same time, as there was a place that could help me, but I couldnt imagine walking that 2.5 hours back all the way, and theres no way you can put a bike in an uber car. So they ended up pomping some air back in to the back tire, and I biked for my life back to the store before all the air would come out. I ended up paying 75 dollars for a new tire and a lock (thank god I got Hema lights of a euro worth from Valerie from Amsterdam, as one light would be 25 dollars each, so that would have been another 50 dollars just to make sure cars realize theres actually a dutch person biking in LA).
I know this story is very detailed, but as much as Im living my dream, because I really am eventho its not always “the dream’, these are stories that are part of it and make life so interisting and amazing and annoying at the same time. But guess what, one of my happiest moments is now everytime I bike around , knowing the way, and feeling so proud that im probably 1 out of the 10 people that bike in LA. How many milllion people live here again? Hahaha But ah its the little things.
We all know how much I love walking and believe me Ive walked, and still do my legs of here. Cause everything thats under a 1 hour walk, and Im not really in a rush, I’ve been walking. But it feels so so good to be biking now and to ‘only’, – which is still daily- have to use uber for the places further away.
A thing I will never get used to here it the traffic. You really spend half of your day in cars, me mostly with strangers. So can you imagine that almost everytime I take uber I spend minimum one hour a day with one or more people Ive never met in my life in a car so close on eachother, and than you leave eachother again to most likely never meet them again. Its just the weirdest and funniest thing. Ive made some friends along the way as almost everyone who uses uber is an artist, director, dancer, muscician, singer, producer etc. Or I mean, thats also just ANYONE you meet here in LA. But still. Its a great extra networking possibility.
Im weekly trying to take at least 5 dance classes and they really never get boring. There are just sooo many studios here its really unbelievale and I will never be over it. Somedays I really have 3 of my favourite teachers teaching at the same time, at different studios that its really a fight to figure out where I wanna go. But those are luxury problems to me. I do feel like, Ive finally figured out which classes and studios I prefer, and Im trying to stick to my own ‘weekly dance schedule’ that Ive made now. Im seeing more and more familiar faces too, so thats really nice. As most people from all around the world come over alone with exactly the same motivation as me. So as much as we are all alone, we really are not.
Another typical example of a day in LA is auditon days. As im signed with the agencies now, Im auditioning more, which is great, Some days I can have 2 commercial auditions, 1 dance audition, a meeting, a danceclass planned all in one day. Of course you have to have different looks//outfits for all of them.
So you really travel around with your carry on, spend half the day stuck in traffic with strangers after strangers, as 1 audition can be all the way downtown and the other audition can be at the most west point of LA, and that all without any traffic already takes you 1 hour, so if the times suck for traffic, youre basicall done. On top of that Im going into starbucks everytime to make costume changes in their restrooms. I wonder what people think when they see me walk in completely different than the way I walk out... Than again this city is made out of people like me, so im sure everybody secretly thinks ‘good to know Im not the only one using starbucks restrooms as a dressingroom’. Hahaha
Another highlight of my past month has been the fact that Ive seen my ultimate Dream Actor “ Joey Tribianni’ from ‘Friends’. I know Joey is not his real name, but for me he will always be Joey! Another common side gig in this city is the fact that you can sign yourself for different companies that will sent you out to ‘tv shows’ and you get paid to be an audience member. This pay can really be from 10 dollar for the whole day (what I had of course) up to 150 dollar. I didnt go for the money this time, clearly, but I really wanted to experience something like this, especially if Joey would be one of the actors in the studio!!
I ended up going with my friend Lisa from England to the sitcom ‘ Man with a plan’ where Joey is the main actor. (And yes eventhough he is 50- something and grey, I still have a crush on him) Just like friends and all the sitcomes we see, they basically do all the scenes in the studio, with a live audience (yes those stupid laughs you hear in the background are real and recorded, you might hear mine now too :P), while filming the episode. They even redo the scenes here and there with different sentences /scenarios to see what ‘joke’ work better, before they sent it out on tv. We were actually in the studio where they filmed ‘Will & Grace’ so that was pretty cool. I couldnt believe that I was actually part of that all, and not just was watching it on my own couch at home on a lazy, rainy sunday.
Well my dearest all, I feel like im starting to write a book once again instead of a short (I dont know what short is) - blog, so I will leave it for now with this.
Even tho its been steady but slow and really the days can change within 1 hour here. You truly dont know what tomorrow, or the next minute, looks like, until tomorrow is suddenly today and you have 50 emails in your inbox about possible ‘things’ you could be doing or have to do.
I have a lot of faith in this upcoming month(s) that things will start happening, as I said in my last post, you just really feel so close to the fire here. I mean its also very wishfull thinking haha but my heart and soul tell me it will all be fine. Whatever will be, will be and we gotta keep going no matter what.., head up, shoulder back, face in the sun, and steady but slowly like a turtle, who here and there sticks his head out to make sure he is still on the right track,... So I will do the same and will get a lil closer every day.
Believe me tho when I tell you that there are a lot of times I take a moment to myself and really say, as much as I havent achieved my Biggest dreams yet, I really am realizing Im LIVING my dream (doesnt take away I miss you all so so much). I still see myself working on a saterday afternoon in the bar in the north of Amsterdam where I was working, while being 17 years old and at collage, and some of the costumers asked me. (as many, because not many people understood why the hell I had to go to school for 4 years to learn how to dance,.. I mean do you really JUST dance all day? Oh and wait but what the hell are you gonna do after that than? Dont you need to do a real job?...I can go on for hours) I still hear myself say.
‘Well I would really love to dance behind an Artist one day, but for that I need to be in America and for now Im not even alloud to work in that country, bare in mind I dont even speak English (nope I did not, didnt pass my english exam at highschool), so I wouldnt know how that could be possible. But if you ask me what my biggest dream would be, that is my answer’. I may have not danced behind an artist here, yet. BUT I definitley have a lot of moments here, that I think back about all the dahm steps and roads Ive been taking to be today where I am. Its incredible to me how things (all the dots connect) all make sense now when you look back. Its crazy. If you would have told me my own lifes story to the 17 year old girl from 10 years ago, that this all would work out this way, I would have laughed out loud in your face and probably ordered a bottle of wine( yes I was alloud to drink at 17) Crazy, but its real. So real.
Any how. Hope youre all having some of those realisation moments about your own life here and there too. And if you dont, I would strongly advice you to make some time to just sit back and think about where you are, how the hell you came there, all the steps and roads youve been taking, all the directions and redirections youve followed. What youve learned, how it all makes you feel, and to realize that theres definitely time to be proud of yourself and of all you have achieved.
We all know deep inside what we are capapble of and I think we can all be honest to ourself too about the fact that if you know deep down there that you are not living the life yet you always have imagined, or dreamed about, the life you think you should and deserve to live. Than theres no space and time yet to be lazy and stay stuck in the place youre in right now for too long. But may we all know that its oke to not know how to get from point A to point B. The how doesnt really matter anyway. As long as you picture your own point B, your own Northstar, that will be motivation enough for you everyday to take a step forward, even if its the tinniest little turtle step. Just focus on the next step.
That being said, my next step is me going to bed, but Goodmorning to the otherside of the world! X
9 februari 2018 11:56 | Door: saskia koopman
Thank you for this wonderfull and wise advise ! Good Luck in the future and a lot of wonderfull bikeridesI'm really enjoying your wonderfull whereabouts.
9 februari 2018 13:17 | Door: Solange Siliee
Very inspiring, Solo. Continue follow your dream. It seems like you have even become an inspirational blogger.
9 februari 2018 14:03 | Door: Mama
Dear Solange, I enjoy your blog so much :D ... almost by living it by myself :P
You realize your goals step by step, still having the end in mind.
So proud of you! Keep making your ultimate dream come true <3
Love you, mama
9 februari 2018 17:03 | Door: Babs
Hola dear Solange. I do enjoy so much being part of your life sinds you are a baby! Thank you for sharing your L.A.life. As you said.It is the road you walk ,that is important. Keep your heart,mind en eyes open! You meet ofcourse people less nice,but as you wrote also very nice ones. Love you very much en wish you All the Best Babs
p.s.Eric is visiting me in Marbella. He is going to learn Spanish for 2 weeks and he is 53 years.So never to old to learn hahahaha.
10 februari 2018 09:51 | Door: Minnie and Bert
Wat een mooi verhaal en wat een avontuur daar aan de andere kant van de
wereld in die enorme stad.Wij genieten van je enthousiasme en inspiratie.
Keep the spirit high en geniet ervan!
Liefs, Minnie en Bert
12 februari 2018 21:38 | Door: Emily Kinch
This is so exciting! can't wait for the next chapter ;-) love x x x x
14 februari 2018 21:50 | Door: Anne
Wat een super mooi verhaal. Een heerlijk avontuur met uiteraard ups en downs, maar helemaal zoals het hoort! Er spreekt zoveel wijsheid uit jouw woorden... ik zit vol bewondering en trots te lezen.. je bent een topper! Veel liefde en knuffels jouw kant op