postcards from the past, from Paris.

darlings

as you may recall – we adore Post.

sending it, receiving it, admiring it, writing it.

generally very Into Post.

for example – last night, as we walked home from the grocery store after spending the evening with friends, we popped into the smallish cubby hole (yes, the one by the Laundry Room by the mid-70s mirrored glass lobby which is not that photogenic or we Would have shared it already) and Picked up the Post.

what did we find?

oh!

Post from ENGLAND!

5d44456a8f3f11e3adf0123b25f3136a_8Mr. William Godwin is a most special Friend.

*wipesawaytear*

and we are Very grateful.

what’s that?

ah yes.

perhaps a cross-cultural confusion has arisen.

on the left – Mr. Ronnie Corbett from a comedy duo called The Two Ronnies (yes, there was a second Ronnie, a much taller one – for comedic effect), a stalwart of innuendo-chortle-inducing saturday night “Telly” (as the Brits call it) while the Nation sat agog from the many brown-ish shades of sofas popular that decade (often with a fringe for the more middle-class aspirationals).

ah.

but on the Right.

That would be Danny La Rue.

*pause_for_respect*

a stunning entertainer and all round genius.

Next time you see William, he can tell you the story of how he MET the great one. It’s a good tale and no mistake. Plenty of sequins (not on William, he does a nice dark suit, slim-cut, polished shoes).

back to the Post (about) Post.

so we got a postcard from Paris – from the Past – this week.

read on….

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you see, we Adore a Carte Postale. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

particularly one from PARIS. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

and most especially when there’s still the message, quite discernible, on the back.

because when we see a Postcard in an antiques store (the one very near the Mission at San Juan Capistrano that we visited on Friday) and it sort of “speaks to us” (not Literally we hasten to add – more of a delicate yet very clear Vibration – bear with us, this IS california, love, we say stuff like that here and it’s Ever so much fun.)

we pick it up and start to read, with a great deal of Wonder.

Dear Parents, It was a great relief, this a.m, to have Dede’s letter saying you’d received my cable. Those addresses and dates in the cable are the same as I gave you before leaving Nutley. When you receive this I’ll be set to depart for the Grosvenor House Hotel. My reservation on Pan Am is Flight 101 to n.y on aug 16th. LOVE HD
WONDERFUL TIME –

*shivers*

isn’t that delicious?

she – for it was indeed a she – was in PARIS at Le Claridge (or just stopped in to buy this postcard, perhaps she was staying with bohemian 1920s (?) friends in the Quartier Latin) and heading to the Grosvenor House Hotel in London before making her way back to the United States on Pan Am Flight 101 (which just happened to be the flight that the Beatles took in 1964 on their 1st trip to the USA for the so-called “Beatles Invasion” although we do Not believe that was their intention, they just came to play some music and very nice music it is too).

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back to our friend HD, still suspended in the early 20th Century (when exactly do you think? post College Trip?) – we became Fascinated at this young American woman, flying on Pan Am, sending Cables (don’t you wish we still could?) and her European sojourn in such fine places.

(plus anyone who writes to their parents and calls them Dear Parents makes us chuckle)

so we did some sleuthing (because that’s what we do).

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAand here’s what we found!

HD is Harriet Hudson.

Dr. Harriet Hudson.

who became the Dean of Randolph Macon Women’s College in Virginia and was obviously so Respected and beloved that there’s a Scholarship Fund in her hono(u)r to this day.

Screen Shot 2014-02-06 at 7.38.13 AMIn 1965, The Pittsburgh Press, gave notice that Dr. Harriet Hudson would be celebrated at a tea for her great Achievements in Academic Life.

so – working backwards – someone would reach such a venerable age to be so Feted at Retirement age or thereafter – so let’s say that our (for we feel she is now part of teamgloria) Dr. Harriet Hudson was circa 65 in 1965.

thus born at the beginning of the 20th century.

if the Postcard from PARIS was sent post College on a last hurrah before settling into her Career (for we find no record of marriage so we assume she was a Career Lady – like us – which is delicious and probably had a wardrobe of sensible tweed skirts and a Good pearl necklace and interesting hats for sundays) then on Friday, in San Juan Capistrano, we held a Postcard from PARIS 1920s.

the m y s t e r y we will never solve is how Harriet’s postcard from the 1920s got from her parent’s house in the City of Carlinville (where her father was the head of the College there) all the way to california Ninety Years Later.

but we *think* (always a dangerous activity yet such fun) we have solved it.

Dr. Harriet Hudson wanted to send teamgloria a postcard from the past from Paris.

and we’re Thrilled she did.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAlet’s face it, if you’re going to send anyone a postcard from the past from paris – at least you know WE are going to get it and treasure it (in moleskine #161 if you’re reading this in the Future and looking through our Archives in the Library).

in other news – here are the other treasures we found on our Road Trip back last week:

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAsome lovely Maxfield Parrish cards.

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due to some Further sleuthing we found that our clipping from Architectural Digest August 1985, contained the apartment of Tommy Tune which was once the dwelling of a certain Mr. Tennessee Williams (145 W.55th Street from 1965 – 1966) OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAand Mulligans is still here (although the Mulligans themselves have long retired – we did call and ask if we could visit) – where the lovely bear-like Mr. Rob Reiner used to go to stay sane in a crazy world.

actually….

*lookstocamera*

we Are going to visit Mulligans (the shop, not the people) today.

so we’ll post pictures later. (and much later there will Also be an Article)

AFTER we drive to the virtual bungalow on the Studio Lot of Miss. Vickie Lester to be helpful around some digital matters (well, we’ll be sitting on the chaise by the window admiring her plantings – who-we-are-in-RL is doing the helpful/digital bit).

isn’t life delicious?

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAit’s very sunny over here so the blinds are drawn.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAand light beams play on the creamy walls.

or is that Dr. Harriet Hudson smiling because we got her Postcard from the Past in Paris?

it could be.

you n e v e r know.

*shivers*

because the bit that Really made us *gasps* was not (just) Paris or its probably vintage but the fact that our new friend Harriet was flying from London to NYC on August 16th*.

which is the exact date teamgloria flew from London to NYC in 2001 to start our new life in the United States – here’s where we celebrated a Decade in this lovely Land (2001)

*and is also, of course you know this already, Ms. Madonna Louise Ciccone’s birthday.

to tea with the duke at el royale.

darlings

such a delightful treat.

our friend – whom we must only refer obliquely to as the duke – has moved into rooms-at-the-El-Royale!

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well – we *sighed* (prettily and deeply) upon hearing this – we could not Resist the invitation to tea while taking in the sunset (all 360-degrees of it, from the roof terrace) – over los angeles.

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as you may know, the El Royale has an illustrious history dating from 1927 (Clark Gable was a resident) and even the taps (faucets) are similar to those at Chateau Marmont for twas the same architect we are reliably informed.

and yes, we took the grown-up camera to capture it for You.

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all this – chandeliers, art deco faucets/taps, and sunset over the Hollywood Sign.

the duke is most happily in Residence now.

we did a little digging on the history.

apparently – according to this article in the Los Angeles Times – the famous neon sign was dark for many years due to the energy shortage in the 70s (not an easy time for many and very challenging in terms of fashion) and got switched on again as the money flowed into Town in the mid 80s.

also (our source here is again the L.A. Times):

There used to be a library where a fireplace glowed on chilly afternoons and a tea-and-reception room for the ladies to enjoy after an afternoon’s shopping.

in other sources we found that there were many Agents from CAA (like Mr. Huvane and Mr. Lourd) and moviestars (such as Ms. Uma Thurman) who moved in after the once-bright starlets and stage decorators from nearby Paramount, who had lived there since 1929 when it opened, had transitioned into other forms, glittering still, on the Sound Stage of beyond….

of course it is these people that we dreamed of as we drifted down the corridors under the chandeliers, past the service entrance (yes! each apartment had a separate service door so your Jeeves could slip into the kitchen quietly to make the coffee piping hot before rousing you from slumber in the boudoir beyond) and through the apartment door (a nice dark heavy wood).

people like, for instance, Virginia Fox, who appeared in silent pictures (with Mr. Buster Keaton), Mr. Clark Gable, Marian Nixon and the lovely Loretta Young.

couldn’t you just IMAGINE them all gathering over a soothing cup of cocoa on a winter’s night (or what passes for a winter’s night over on This Coast)?

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gosh!

we *knew* we’d seen that picture of the lovely Loretta Young (with Mr. David Niven and Mr. Cary Grant) before – that’s because we just bought a ticket to a Special Screening that’s coming up here in Los Angeles.

just in case it’s not showing near you – here’s the trailer (or non-trailer as they amusingly might call it these days).

*sighs*

isn’t that delicious?

we bet the lovely Loretta Young went home to her apartment in the El Royale after making the Bishop’s Wife and had a nice cup of tea and loosened her corsets and starting to read scripts that her agent had sent over by Messenger for her consideration.

wonder if the duke has a script or two lying around……it’s entirely possible.

living at the El Royale inspires one to be simply gloriously Hollywood you see.

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).

ok.

large exhale.

we’re hard to quantify.

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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

ok.

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.
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in the meantime, we write to you.

which we love doing.

oh.

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?