learning patience in paradise with the kindness of strangers.

we did not realize that when one seeks to be a More patient human one is thrown a whole bunch of agonizingly difficult life circumstances with myriad opportunities to, er, well, Practice it.

one might assume – almost 12 years later – that waiting for a green card would have given us the patience of a saint (were they particularly patient? serene, we’re sure, yes, but patient? why? do tell if you know).

on good days, it has.

or at least it has given us a delicious sense of fun to distract us While we are waiting.

because magical things happen when One Waits.

for example, today, we wait to see if our application for an apartment has been accepted.

and while we wait someone glorious emailed us and said “let’s have tea!”

which is Quite the Nicest thing to happen today (and it’s only 9.19AM on This coast).

what we haven’t Confessed thus far (and this is only going to be a Tiny bit of what is a Really Long and not-for-the-faint-hearted life story – but it’ll make many movies some day – not merely one – no one would believe that such Adventures have befallen just one human being – and If/When one is in a Hollywood pitch meeting, one needs just one good Hook and three distinct acts – we’ve lived Many More than that and we’re pretty sure we’re not even Half-way through as yet…..darlings).


large exhale.

we’re hard to quantify.


quick moment of distraction here to pause and say, don’t you just adore the way the californian sun tantalizingly peeks through the wooden slatted white blinds and caresses the 1960s style lamp? delicious.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

more distraction – this is the view if one (just to give you a visual) – pops one’s long hair up in a ponytail and ties up the fluffy white hotel robe and ventures forth onto the communal balcony to take a photograph…….OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

and this is the blue-blue (but alas quite Chilly, for L.A) sky. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA


back to the Point.

one is never sure whether one will get Approved for anything in America because we are hard to quantify.

you see we have no debt, no loans and don’t use other-people’s-money-to-buy-things (because it’s illogical).

which means we don’t Exist.

in. a. way.

(and in many ways, we don’t. we are pretty self-realized as opposed to self-created – we would not dare assume we did this – it’s been Rather magical and inspired/inspiring non?).

so people get quite freaked out when they look for Records.

we are very Honest.

we tell them all the names we have used (and there have been quite a few).

and we offer to pay more of our own cash to make them feel Comfortable.

but then we Wait.

to see if they call.

if not.

what shall we do?

it’s worked so far.

but not always.

there’s always the possibility of getting another flight back to NYC – waiting here – finding another apartment – seeing if someone else appreciates our mode-de-vivre on the ebb and flow of energy/money and let’s us Live there. wherever That is.

in the meantime, we write to you.

which we love doing.


and we wrote a letter to Victoria magazine (do you know it? all southern ladies and tea and trips to Venice and paris and entrepreneurs of beauteous things? we adore it).

here’s our letter.

because it’s a thank you letter, in a way.

and there’s nothing that makes Waiting easier than saying thank you for what one already has (smiling gently and beatifically at you via the interweb darling).

Victoria magazine was asking for letters on the theme of the “Kindness of Strangers”.


Dearest Victoria Magazine

The kindness of strangers is often virtual and via the internet, these days, and no less precious for that.
In May 2011, I was traveling the world with a big corporate job and suddenly got diagnosed with three tumors in my throat. I was shocked beyond belief and could not tell anyone close to me for the longest time.
Instead, I posted on Instagram, the photo-sharing site, anonymously, using my teamgloria moniker, keeping my real identity hidden, due to my job.
I follow, and am followed, on Instagram by about 300 people and they walked me through the diagnosis, surgery and subsequent month’s medical leave. I posted pictures from my hospital bed. They posted photographs of bouquets of raspberry pink roses with messages of love and support from as far afield as Tokyo and Berlin, Australia to London.
When I was confined to my apartment in a great deal of physical and emotional pain, I took still-life images of candles, bed linens and endless of cups of tea. They took soaring landscapes and breathtaking sunsets from all over the world and told me I would see the world again.
In time, I started to write about how to get through difficult times and used all my photographs to compile a book. I got signed by a literary agent and she sold my book to a publisher. None of this would have been possible without my Instagram virtual friends who showed me the kindness of strangers.
Much love, teamgloria (sophia stuart).

so that’s our take on the Kindness of Strangers……….what would yours be, darlings?

7 thoughts on “learning patience in paradise with the kindness of strangers.

  1. I’m not familiar with the way the California sun peeks tantalizingly through the slats, but the way you describe and capture it in image it is so “film noir” and delicious, I’m ready to throw my laptop and a few pairs of heels into a bag, hop in my car, and head west to see for myself…

    As for patience, it has never been one of my virtues in some respects, and in others, looking at my life I find it offers ample ex-amples of precisely that.

    Waiting, nonetheless, feels passive and thus, so hard. But it isn’t passive when you turn it into a tangible “something” via verbs and adjectives and even elusive but unthreatening shadows.

    All good currency for kindness.

  2. Well, for starters, You most certainly inspire me oodles. You do. I am very, very pleased our virtual paths have found their way towards each other! And fingers are still crossed, which is getting rather painful, so I really do hope that you get a “Yes!” for your apartment soon.

    How I loved your letter. And as to your question, for some reason one tiny story came to mind. I had just moved to NYC and was poor as a church-mouse. It was winter and I had gotten the flu but of course did not do anything about it until it was the middle of the night and I needed medicine immediately. Yes, this was before there was a Duane Reade on every corner–there was only ONE all night pharmacy in midtown. In my hazy state, I hopped into a cab at three in the morning, I was desperate so it was quite a splurge. But I had grabbed my wallet, only realizing that it contained nothing more than my newly acquired student AMEX card (aka The Devil), once I had bought the medicine. When I came back out to the waiting cab, I apologized profusely, ready to make the long walk across town. To my surprise, the cabbie said “It is ok, don’t worry, I’ll take you home,” and turned off the meter, just like that. He politely ignored my happy tears.

    I warned you it was a tiny story but one that stayed with me after all of these years.

    1. oh, heather – that’s a beautiful story – we stood in line at the bank getting the Cashier’s Check for the new apartment (tis OURS!) and felt very connected and at one with the universe as a result of the cab driver’s kindness towards you…..beautiful.

  3. Hello, from the Old North State! I agree that kindness from strangers, especially at unexpected moments, is well worth appreciation. Have enjoyed reading your recent posts. Your friend’s comment about the temporary state of things made me remember how Paul’s Edie also sang those words in a favorite tune of mine, Circle (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TJ4jIYS7YsE). Am sure that you will find a glorious new abode soon. Best wishes and hope you get to toast the New Year in LA!

    1. oh! oh! we played this album OVER AND OVER AGAIN when it came out and haven’t heard it for years. listening to it now and smiling via your Link. bless you. needed this. thank you. singing along Right Now.

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