I never thought I’d say this but, I’ve been a little homesick for Hollywood lately.
The whole time I lived in LA, the city just never sat well with me. Hollywood and I had our moments, but for the most part, I always knew it was never where I would stick. But during that time, I did make a few very, very good friends who, four months since leaving, I am missing a lot. Turns out, sometimes a few good friends is all it takes to make an address, home.
Brunching in West Hollywood with my very good friend, actress Allison McAtee and our friend Julie. March 2009.
Last Friday, I had a wonderful day in Las Vegas with one of my best friends, Stephanie, and her adorable son, Teo. Because we call him our monkey, I brought him this rolling monkey backpack, thinking he would want to take the monkey out and play with it, and Steph would have a carrier for stuff as he starts pre-school. Turns out, Teo’s current “thing” is pushing things around the house and down the street, and refused to pull the wheeler, but did not want to quit after at least and hour of “pushing” the monkey in his pack. Too much fun.
Deetours: My Catholic Confirmation in Hermosillo. (Fifteen Years Later.)
To do list for wanderlust summer: 1) Save the world; 2) Write the book; 3) And most importantly, keep my commitments to my friends. Even if it means extending summer.
Laying around doing nothing is just not in my nature. Despite declaring a desperate need to take a break to hit “reset,” even if it meant draining my savings, I still set a few goals for myself for a semi-productive summer in which I would accomplish things I’ve never had the time to do when I was working on the West Coast: Visit EDV in Haiti, finish and send out all remaining book proposals, spend time with my family in Mexico with a goal to make progress on my conversational Spanish (I read, write and understand well, but still get nervosa speaking), and get my Catholic confirmation. Last week’s silence was attributed to day and night hustling on PGB and now today, I am off to Mexico for the latter.
When I first announced to one of my best friends, Stephanie, that I would be moving out of LA, she booked a last minute trip to visit in which we spent a delightful weekend lounging around the SLS in Beverly Hills and seeking out the city’s best cuisine that isn’t already duplicated in her town of Las Vegas. It was Steph’s first weekend away from her adorable son Teo, and neither of us expected it to be easy. While it was a far cry from the wild girls weekends of the pre-baby past, she held strong through and we had a great time catching up, reminiscing and a lot of Teo talk. And there, while reminiscing over the last great girls weekend (Miami Beach, Summer 2009) over a couple glasses or rose wine, she asked if I would baptize Teo who I also love like a nephew. Of course, I accepted with excitement, but there’s only one problem, I never got my Catholic confirmation (typically done at age 15).
The story of why is one of the cornerstones of PGB. It was around the time as I began my last year of Catholicism classes that a disagreement with my mother on the views of the church, particularly how they related to my boyfriend at the time, sparked the seven-year exodus between me, the church and Hermosillo. A decision years later I would come to regret. Now, fifteen years later, I find myself in a situation where I have to finish the courses and fast. Which is why, when the plans for my gap break, and next chapter suddenly changed, and I began making plans to move to Miami and go back to work in the fall, there was no goal for the remainder of wanderlust summer more important, than getting my confirmation and thanks to the help of my family, there is no easier, faster way than to go to Hermosillo and do it … in Spanish!
My cousin warned me this week that I could even be chosen to read at the ceremony. Talk about facing your fears head on! And while I’m still bummed about Haiti being delayed again, especially as I keep in touch with EDV and the projects that have since resumed since Irene skirted by, I realize now in a weird way, once again, it all sort of just worked out for the best. Living in Miami, I’ll have the opportunity to visit them easier, and more often, but thanks to that odd coincidence, I will still get what will probably one of the last opportunities to spend a bit of time with my family back “home” in Hermosillo.
Next stop: Hermosillo, Mexico.
Photo: My first communion ceremony in Chandler, Arizona. Circa 1987.