This weekend, I had the opportunity to see one of California’s original landmark, Venice Beach. Not surprising to say (at least coming from me), it was a big disappointment.
I am sure that back in it’s hay day, Venice Beach was a nice place with great sun, art, and street life. But on my visit, it was dirty, stinky, crowded with ghetto kids, and cheap. My main beef with Venice Beach is that it looked like a prison yard, minus the dirty restroom facilities (meaning prison probably has better restrooms). Besides the entertaining basketball game that was going on, the rest of the boardwalk made me want to cling tightly to my purse (if I had one).
However, I don’t think that the unfriendly environment at Venice Beach is unique. In fact, I would say that most of the beaches and boardwalk (ie. Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk) I’ve seen in California are very undesirable places to visit. It is a sad reality that we have all these great natural wonders, yet we do not take care of them. We let graffiti get painted on the walls, garbage to collect on the streets, and shady characters loiter around the corner selling drugs and panhandling.
Perhaps if we spend more money cleaning up these natural resources, it could become a source of tourism income for the local economy.
But that’s just my opinion. Some people wouldn’t let stuff like this bother them. Me on the other hand, I won’t be coming back to Venice Beach any time soon.