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Wednesday, June 4, 2014

From the Hamptons to Hawaii

Dear Mom,

Mahalo from Hawaii! Here's the view I saw this morning:
Unfortunately, my morning started a little earlier than I'd hoped. More on that in a minute. But I am treating myself to the St. Regis in Princeville on the island of Kauai. I flew to Honolulu yesterday (side note: not sure what was odder about my seatmate, an old Chinese man -- the fact he stared straight ahead or napped for the entire flight, which lasted almost 11 hours, or the fact he pulled out a bag of raw weenies and gnawed on two of them before we landed!!) and then on to Kauai, where I rented a Mustang convertible. Woooh!!!

Neil told me Duane's Ono Char-Burger was the one thing I HAD to do on the island, so I was delighted to realize I'd drive right past it on my way from the airport. I was starving and practically inhaled the Island Boy with teriyaki, cheddar and pineapple.

I didn't get a photo of the sunset that marked my arrival, but check out what room they put me in! Highland Avenue memories for sure. (Incidentally...the new residents of your house are celebrating the arrival of a grandbaby named...funny enough...Scarlett!!!)
Oh -- while I was killing time at the Honolulu airport, I sent Babs a photo of this book and asked her if I should get a copy for Maggie and J.B. to finish off their "politically incorrect" library of children's lit from Auntie Lyns -- though so far I just have the one book of Uncle Remus tales, which I still need to mail. (I got caught up on a bunch of pre-departure errands on Monday, but I still didn't manage to check that one off the list.)
While I was running errands on Monday, I met Neil for lunch in the Meatpacking District. We had a yummy meal outside at Dos Caminos. On my way there, a reporter from Inside Edition was taping a standup about the latest celebrity fracas at the Gansevoort Hotel. I walked through her shot, but Miss Betty said I did not make the cut for the program that night.
Incidentally, though, when I posted the photo on Facebook, my former colleague Judson made the sweetest comment: "You've got to miss that spotlight a touch! You were so good on air!!!"

What a lovely thing to write! Even if I didn't "make it" in the big leagues, it's awfully special to have people who still say nice things about my reporting after all this time. And I have such good memories of those days, particularly working at WTVY in Dothan. Reginald posted this "oldie goldie" recently:

That's me under the "white out" -- not sure whether that's a gift from a frenemy or an attempt to update the photo for my replacement?! Either way, it was a lot of fun to see it again almost 15 years later.

Speaking of Dothan, my friend Kristy from freshman dorm (who is now a PARTNER at King & Spaulding in Atlanta -- "you go, girl!") sent this pic of her husband Ed and their son Will dining at Dobbs as they returned from the beach. I told her they really needed to check out Larry's on their next trip, as I have such fond memories of a sliced pork sammich with crinkle fries and slaw. It was my comfort food lunch on slow news days in the Wiregrass!

Talk about coming a long way -- I've gone from living on Highway 231 in the Circle City to living on West 43rd Street in the Big Apple -- maybe getting out of TV news wasn't such a bad thing.

Anyway, let me rewind a minute to what's happened since I last wrote. Blaine and I had a great time in the Hamptons with Neil, Nate and Judy.

Nate rolled his eyes and took a nap when we ONCE AGAIN pulled out the old Duke freshman pic book. (He swears he practically wants to set a stopwatch to see how long it takes us to pull it off the shelf every time there's a Duke group out there.) But we had a very pressing research project! Hilary texted us a vintage 1994 list her little sis Jaime made when we were freshman. It was a list of "Guys to Watch For" handwritten on lined notebook paper -- a list that definitely would have benefited from your trademark "hot dog" approach to create some columns as she helpfully cataloged name, hometown and interests. (Meanwhile, I can only imagine how much "cyber stalking" you might have done if you'd had Google and your iPad when we were in college. At the very least, you would have enjoyed the heck out of having your very own copy of the pic book, as the Puskar family did.)

Once Memory Lane had been fully explored, we bought food at Citarella and hit the beach for a picnic lunch.

Unfortunately, right after we took these pics, I started to get sick. Not sure what it was, but I was feverish and nauseated for the rest of the day, and all day Monday. It was awful! I felt so bad, as Blaine had come all that way to have a good time. Of course the boys were excellent hosts as always; the four of them went to a party that evening, while I rested.

When they got back, we all watched Big Business, as Blaine had been joking about feeling like he'd just headed up to the "big city" from Jupiter Holler.

It is, of course, purely a silly movie, but it's still pretty delightful, with lots of memorable quotes ("The meetin'?" and "You're in America! Speak American" to name a few). I fell asleep before the end, so I rented it the next day to finish it, and I actually wrote down a quote from it:
All my life...I felt like I was out of place and I didn't belong. And I didn't. 

I hate my job. I hate shopping. I hate New York in June. How about you?

I hate grits. I hate men who smell like beer and bean dip. And I hate making love in the back of recreational vehicles. Am I rich now? 

It reminded me of the time that "seer" Nancy asked me, "Do you realize you don't fit anywhere?" and I said, "Oh, that's so interesting you would say that. I feel like I fit everywhere!" I consider that to be almost the ultimate moment that I am absolutely a half-full kind of gal in the great glass debate.

Speaking of "movie moments," I had another one watching Philomena on the plane yesterday.

Steve Coogan's character says this line from T.S. Eliot's Four Quartets:
"We shall not cease from exploration
And the end of our exploring
Will be to arrive where we started
And know the place for the first time."

I feel that sense very deeply after spending a few days in Quincy with Dad, trying to help him sort out the very serious medical issues he is facing.

I could write a lot more on that, but there are some things that don't belong on blogs...or Facebook, for that matter! Adam or Gretchen shared a hilarious link on that note recently, and I wish I could find it, but I am trying to zip along. So, let me just say my time in the Q is perhaps best summed up with this from Cousin Susy (or "Oozy Doozy" as you liked to call her):

And I will also just say this -- I am about to have a kick-ass month. But everyone knows it's coming after a very hard year. What most people -- other than those in the inner circle -- don't know is that it's coming right when it needs to come. And that's all we will say about that! The rest, we shall say, "will go in The Book." ;)

Nope -- let me add one more thing -- once again, my time in the Q showed me I never cease to be amazed by what lovely people occupy our little community, and how deep the ties are there.

All right -- let me wrap this up, as I'm due at the spa for a consolation massage to make up for the fact my room phone rang THREE TIMES BETWEEN 3 A.M. AND 5 A.M. GAH! I had to call the St. Regis butler at 5 a.m. and get a block on the number. Talk about "uptown problems."

Anyhoo, Jules sent this adorable pic of Ellasyn playing with the treasures from your curio cabinet. 
The Smith family has a new little one! John and Meredith welcomed Caroline Margaret this week. Aunt Judith and Uncle Jerry's first grandbaby. What a blessing! Check out this sweet pic of the new daddy:
And... Peggy and Charles welcomed Charles Powers, who will be known as Powers, Hanna's maiden name. I spent the morning gazing across Hanalei Bay at the site where his parents honeymooned!

Okay -- off to the spa! Let me sign off with what I think will be the signature mantra of this month of rest, recovery, rejuvenation, exploration and healing:
The Cure for Anything is Salt Water 8 x 10 paper print poster - inspirational ocean artwork, beach word art typography poster
And I am looking forward to four weeks filled with a healthy dose of all three. 



1 comment:

Neil said...

I'm pretty sure the Island Boy is the burger I got there too. Yum! Craving it now!!