KEEPING up with the locals can be tough for an out-of-towner, especially if you're in LA.
It is a long way for Galway girl Shahira Barry, but she seems to be doing just fine.
The model and aspiring actress is stateside for the summer after receiving an exclusive weekend invitation to the Playboy Mansion by the man himself – Hugh Hefner.
Shahira arrived in the sunny western state last week and has already made a big impression after scoring an invitation to a special hip-hop event.
The 22-year-old went urban in a matching shorts and crop-top ensemble, teamed with a baseball hat as she strutted the red carpet at Universal Studios, Los Angeles, for a private hip-hop showcase of up and coming American stars.
Shahira made a splash at the Playboy mansion 'Fun in the Sun' party. This will be her first visit so far on this holiday, but she has an open invitation to attend any weekend that she is in LA, a privilege that not many get.
While she is looking forward to chilling by the pool and making new friends, the qualified teacher also has plenty of career moves up her sleeve.
As well as having several photo-shoots lined up, the Galway native is set to shoot a music video for a top hip-hop star in two weeks, although she is keeping tight- lipped about his identity until the shoot is completed.
"Look at it this way, apart from Tupac, he is Shahira's favourite artist," explained the source.
"She grew up listening to his music, and when she went to his concert when she was quite young, she came away saying that she really wanted to work with him.
"So if it all works out it will be like a dream come true for her."
Shahira first became known stateside when she received an email from Hugh Hefner's personal secretary inviting her to one of the mansion's most exclusive pool parties last September.
She went one better this year and decided to spend four months in the US as she attempts to build her profile across the Atlantic.
Shahira, who is hoping to one day break into the performing arts industry, is due back from LA in September.