Backyard View: Hollywood, CA

by Courtney

in The Backyard

Living in an RV gives me a special opportunity to live in a million different communities and landscapes.  The view out our RV windows changes all the time- and sometimes drastically.

We recently rolled into the Los Angeles area and more specifically, Hollywood.  LA is not known for its large acreage properties, so we were lucky to strike a deal with a non-profit organization called DOOR.  A friend of ours is current working with the organization which basically places six volunteer workers in a house in an impoverished neighborhood.  The six volunteers spend the year creating a community hub for basketball, homework help, gardening, and more.

DOOR has invested in a basketball court and were generous to let us park on the back half.

RV Tagging

It”s pretty rare to see an RV the streets of LA, and it”s a “no-no” to park your RV on the street especially overnight.  LA is notoriously ran by gangs, and RV sides are a huge target of spray-paint vandalism.  There are several RVs parked on the streets that are adorned with grafitti.

It”s rare that these RV are occupied by income earning citizens.  They are typically the home of handfuls of homeless people.  In fact, there are several of these postcards floating around Hollywood that say, “Living in Your RV?  Contact PATH for homeless assisatnce”.

Does this mean I”m homeless?

I”m happy to announce that online casino we avoided any tagging.  While we did park the RV overnight on the street one time, we were in a decent enough area to avoid any trouble.  The rest of the time DOOR welcomed us to park in their fenced in court.


During the day, the six volunteers in the DOOR house commit to 30 hrs/week of work for another organization.  Our friend works specifically with PATH (People Assisting the Homeless).  I was surprised to learn that there are over 80,000 homeless people in LA.  Adam joined Josh (Adventurer Friend) for a day on the road to learn about what kind of assistance is available for the homeless, and also what kind of assistance the homeless even want.

Homelessness is a tricky subject, because some people don”t want to change.  They don”t want to not be homeless, and that”s an impossible thought for most of us.  Many don”t believe they deserve another life.  On the flip-side, there are tons of homeless people that are looking for a way out.  How do you know who”s who?



{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

Justin Hamlin May 6, 2011 at 9:43 pm

As a former Southern Californian, LA is an absolute hole. The outskirts and suburbs are 100x nicer area and safer to boot. Hollywood really has become one of those places you dont want to spend too much time in if you want to feel safe. The “glitz and glamour” of Hollywood really is mostly a myth.

I really applaud you guys for joining up with a group trying to help out the city with the largest acclimation of homeless people in the country. Don’t know if you made it down to Skid Row, but is definitely a very interesting insight into the world that is LA and the homeless.

Also very fun to follow along with your photos and journeys across the country!


Courtney May 7, 2011 at 11:26 am

I am surprised at how many people are obsessed with LA though. I’d like to think that I could be happy in any city, because it’s more about people than the city itself. That said, it didn’t make me giddy.

We didn’t go down Skid Row, but you don’t really have to to see the homeless population. Thanks for following along Justin!


Jolyn @Budgets are the New Black May 7, 2011 at 11:27 am

I remember first visiting Europe years ago when I was 18. We encountered a sole homeless person on one street, and our local guide commented, “You have to WANT to be homeless in Germany.” That was my first encounter with that sad concept, so sad but true. I applaud those who work to separate those unwilling to accept help with those desperately seeking it.


Lisa Wood August 21, 2011 at 9:27 am

Gosh that is different….having so many people living in RVs and then having to park safely so that its not affected by spray painters! Very clever art work, not sure if I would be happy to have our Motorhome sprayed like that :)

That is good that you got to stay safe with the DOOR foundation, and park in their Tennis Court. I thought LA was for the rich and famous? How long have your been travelling for in your RV?

We are about to head off in our Motorhome – travelling around Australia! So super keen to get going and no we are not homeless, we have our house on wheels!

I like how you look out your front window and your scenery changes all the time – thats the beauty of travelling!



Nathan May 4, 2012 at 8:06 am

Wow…having lived in an RV previously (we’re in a VW Bus now), and having hated it’s white walls and teal “waves in the mountains” decals, I may have actually appreciated a little graffiti poured over the side of it…though I’m not sure some of the stuffier RV parks around the country still would’ve welcomed us.

As for being homeless, I believe the old adage “Home is where your Heart is” couldn’t be more apt for full time RVers, or really anyone who travels purposely and purposefully. Being homeless, in the sense most people think of the word, is typically not a choice, and even homeless people look to create some type of shelter. Living in an RV, that’s your home, it’s a decision, not a circumstance.


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