Trip Start Oct 20, 2012
61Trip End Jul 11, 2013
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What I did
Cindy & Jeff, Karen & Elinor, Joe & Tina
Beverly Hills, Hollywood, Santa Monica, & Westlake Village
As gypsy luck would have it, Karen lives on one of the only three blocks in Rancho Park that allows parking on the street, albeit somewhat steep parking. I was pretty nervous unhooking the trailer, even with all four wheels chocked, and even more nervous about sleeping in it, but the alternative was a pullout couch - I haven't had good luck with them - so I crawled up into my trailer loft only to wake up pinned against the back door. Getting up in the middle of the night, as is custom these days, also presented a challenge trying to stay balanced on the slope.
Mallery, Travis and I took advantage of Karen's "normal" hospitality and were very comfortable and entertained by her great energy and excitement. We have only seen each other twice in 40 years but was one of those "just like yesterday" experiences. She is deeply ensconced in "The Industry" and very connected in the LA circuit... seemingly at all levels... radio, TV, film and the social scene. We chattered and reminisced, some stories entertained Mallery & Travis but the "do you remembers" can get old if you weren't even born...(meanwhile it must be after 9 PM because Billy is asleep out in the Odyssey Mobile) But I digress...
The moment after arriving and unhooking, we were (whisked away and) treated to an afternoon of complete decadence by the "grandparents" - massages at Burke Williams Spa in Santa Monica then a stroll down "The Promenade" for the street shows and people-watching that is unique to the city. Before sending Mallery and Travis back to Helena, the four of us rented bicycles and rode the bike strip on Venice Beach for just a little more people-watching and exercise in perfect weather - but then it seems that the weather on this entire adventure has been perfect.
I don't know about the boys but Mallery, Cindy & I took advantage of the Women's Solarium a small, delightful, perfect temperature, open air room with a two-sided fireplace and very comfortable chairs with a refreshingly amazing aroma therapy experience, sipping lemon rosemary water.... Still in our robes, relaxed from our massages it was a perfect setting, the perfect company and not rushing any where... except maybe out of the "Quiet Room" where we lasted about 11 seconds because Mallery & I couldn't stop giggling. It was Heaven right there in the middle of Santa Monica! Thank you Cindy & Jeff. It is great being with you ANYWHERE but you-yet again-top the charts with your ideas and execution!
Mary wasted no time inviting friends over to our new digs. We had a couple of really nice dinners in Karen's back yard with Cindy, Jeff and Dauber [my litter mate]
Joe would blurt out the name of someone he hadn't seen in some 30 years and then look up incredulously, "whoa, where did that come from ?", while Elinor would repeat nicknames and gaze off into the distance trying to remember where " Slo " fit into her life. Of course, Mary remembered everyone, and what was most amazing to me, none of these people knew the hundreds of other people that Mary had recollected with friends over the past 7 months. How many more can there be?
Elinor, Anna Banana & I were roommates in college also (although Banana's a lot older) HaHaHaHa... ah yes well anyway... Elinor makes me smile and laugh and think. I adore her and her inimitably honest, put-it-right-out-there style... She essentially always thinks out loud... you're never quite sure if she's looking for an answer or response or if she's just thinking... Hmmm, that's kinda what Pooh Bear does isn't it? Never thought about that before...
Anyway, she is yet another friend who made Los Angeles her home and has had amazing successes and achievements and accolades but they somehow remain "secret." One time when Banana and I were visiting her house she had pictures of her with a bunch of cute boys (which of course I love) but these cute boys were Robert De Niro, Kevin Costner, Sean Connery and Richard Gere... and then it was like pulling teeth get her to "mention" awards and nominations and accolades... Now the cute boys she's loves spending her time with are husband Seth and son Joey!
Joe was a close college chum at Maryland, from Valley Stream NY, same town as an old college flame, Ralph, whose name has come up quite a bit this trip. Joe was even a roommate at one point and Billy is right! (well, Always!) Pulling some of those names out was pretty funny and remarkable, given that our college days were times very unfriendly to brain cells! Joe was, and still is, fabulously energetic and lovable. We met Tina toward the end of our tenure at Maryland but she fit in with this crowd like "an old shoe." She and Joe are the epitome of socialites. They too (Tina from Cleveland and Joe from NY) adopted and adapted to the "LA scene" I'm sure within minutes of arriving. They look incredibly healthy and seem to enjoy every minute of this Southern California life.