Archive for January 2013

Not Seeking, Yet I Find

When not seeking extraordinary experiences is when I seem to find them.

My amazing, talented, gorgeous little sister is a sommelier in a resort town in Colorado.  This past summer she went to Las Vegas take a test to become an Advanced Sommelier.  The testing for these qualifications is a week long process.  It’s no easy feat.  Hearing of her plans I decided to join her in the last day of the test, and be there when she found out the results. Our time together was truly spectacular.

The first night we had no idea where to eat, so we decided to stay in the hotel we were staying at and we ate at Jean Georges steak house in the Aria.  We ate with two of her male colleagues who were also there taking the test.  One of these gentlemen she knew ordered the wine and offered to pay for the bottle champagne he wanted to order.  I cannot imagine how much it must have cost.  The taste of that champagne is indescribable.  Saying it was from the 1990s, had barely any bubbles and tasted so incredibly smooth, does not do it justice. The food was delicious, especially when coupled with the various wines that were ordered; dinner was an unbelievable culinary masterpiece and after all that wine, I was barely tipsy and did not even have a hangover.  That astonished me considering what a lightweight I am these days. The really good wine doesn’t have all that sugar, so it all makes sense.  You get what you pay for and when you pay a lot for good alcohol, you only have to pay financially the day after, not physically with a hangover.

The next night, through her connections, my sister was able to get us a great table at the Mediterranean restaurant Olives in the Bellagio.  We were seated on the patio overlooking the lake with the water show.  We had front row seats to a gorgeous “show” and first class food and beverages.  The water fountain show happened every fifteen minutes.  We saw water dancing to Michael Jackson’s, “Billie Jean” and “All That Jazz” from the musical Chicago, which coincidentally my sister has performed in many times, being a Musical Theater graduate from NYU’s prestigious Tisch Program for the Arts.  It was fun hearing her sing along quietly as the water blasted.  There was one time that the fountain sprayed the highest height we’d seen all night at the very end of a song and with the wave of a good drift of wind, about 10 seconds later, we were soaked.  The wait staff politely brought many napkins out to all of us on the patio and we patted ourselves off and laughed about it…until the next song / water show began.  I was nervous about getting soaked again during each of the rest of the shows, but none got us as wet as that super tall spray did.  I wonder if the fountain people communicate with the restaurants about how the guests seated outside are faring in the misting.  If not, they should talk about that, just to be sure the guests paying ridiculous amounts of money to eat on the patio are doing so, finishing their meal as dry as possible.  My sister and I are not bothered by these sorts of things but I could imagine how some people would be bothered by it.

After our meal ala mist, we went to the Mirage to meet up with a friend of mine who lives in Las Vegas.  She was meeting her friends in the club One Oak.  We’re all in our thirties, partied plenty in our twenties so a club wasn’t too exciting to us anymore but we got a table and figured, if we were at least sitting, we could take in the sights of the madness that is a Vegas nightclub.  We saw someone dressed in a chicken outfit and many women who wore dresses that didn’t cover their crotch. Typical night at a club in Vegas I guess.

About an hour into our club night, we noticed some guys standing on the edges of some of the booths.  Then we noticed they had microphones.  Then they started singing.  After their first song, one of them announced that they were “The Wanted.”  I had heard of the group but my sister hadn’t until she heard their song, “I’m Glad You Came.”  One of “The Wanted” came over within a foot of us while they sang and was ravaged by some chick who did know who they were. Poor guy.

To some, these experiences would not qualify as extraordinary, but to me, because they were shared with someone I love immensely, these memories will always be magical and surreal.

Click the photo for the video footage of “The Wanted” performing at One Oak Las Vegas

MySurreaLife watching The Wanted at OneOak Las Vegas

A day in the SurreaLife of Southern California

I’m one of those people who has a huge extended family; so huge that I’m not sure how many first cousins I have. Unfortunately we’re all pretty spread out across the good ‘ol US of A.

I am also one of those people who takes full advantage of geographical closeness to my friends and family when it happens. I’ll go out of my way to be able to spend some face time with a loved one.  Fortunately, my significant other also likes to see friends and family when possible, and convenient for him.

Yesterday was one of those days of getting to catch up. face to face with some of our friends and family. One of my father’s cousins & her husband were in town from the East Coast, staying in Long Beach on the Queen Mary. When she told me of her plans last week & asked if I could meet up with them, I quickly said yes & made plans. I hadn’t seen these super fun people in a couple years and in the 9 years I’ve lived in LA, I have yet to visit the Queen Mary. So exciting all around!

We drove (and drove) down to Long Beach in relatively good time.  We were about ten minutes from reaching the Queen Mary when I rec’d a text from my “aunt” who asked if we could just meet them directly at the restaurant.  I asked my significant other if that sounded good with him, it did so we changed our route just slightly.  En route to the restaurant I asked him if it was okay if we went to the Queen Mary after lunch, since I still really wanted to see it.  He’s not much of a sight seeing kind of guy, so I wasn’t surprised when he said he didn’t feel like it.  I was only mad for a minute & reminded myself that plans change and to go with it because there is a reason for everything.  It wasn’t meant for me to finally see the Queen Mary yesterday.  Apparently another day will be better for a visit.

It was so wonderful to spend a long lunch with this side of my family.  We caught up on each others’ lives, health and plans for the immediate and distant future.  We took a group photo so we would know when the last time it was when we saw one another. Being all together yesterday, we couldn’t quite pinpoint when the last time was that we saw one another.  That made me a bit sad, thinking it had been that long that no one knew exactly how long it had been since we had all been together. That’s why I’m so anxious to take advantage of any reason to be together; we don’t have to wait for a birthday or a wedding or a funeral to come together and catch up.  We should not wait only for special occasions to plan to get together.  In my mind, everyday is a special occasion to be shared.

During lunch, my significant other got a call from a friend who is a commentator and was in town with the NBA team he works for.  Yet another change in plans! Go see this friend who was staying in Beverly Hills, which was on our way home from Long Beach.  We got to the hotel, walked around, waited for his friend, and sat down and talked with him for an hour or so before he had to get ready to go to the game.  I saw two NBA players, one of which I actually recognized.  I also saw all of these insanely expensive cars and could not help but drool a little…and act like a tourist, snapping photos at all the luxurious money on wheels.

My significant other dropped me at home and he headed to a friend’s house, an actor, to catch up some more after they saw each other at an award show last week.  When my guy got to this guy’s house, the actor was having a photo shoot, which my guy was not expecting.  This actor is always having people over, ALWAYS.

Yesterday, as with most everyday, is brought with unknown changes in plans.  We can roll with the tide or fight it.  Fighting the waves of change does nothing but make everything more tense.  I’m not a big fan of tense.  Might as well roll with the changes as they come.  Hope everyone is having a great Martin Luther King Jr weekend!

MySurreaLife

MySurreaLife of Love

While driving to lunch at a restaurant in Malibu just now with my significant other & my 84 year old mother in law, I used my lovely Spotify app to play some Billie Holiday songs. My mother in law loves Billie. She has a framed poster of her in her foyer and everything. It is so fun to see her get so excited and sing along to the tunes of her youth. She cracks up every once in awhile and makes remarks like, “there’s some truth in that song!” What has been the absolute best, however, is hearing her say, “Boom” after every song. Ohhhh I love life!

image

MySurreaLife & the unpredictability that is everywhere in Los Angeles

Am I the only dummy who rationalizes  stupid little untruths that make my life that much more difficult?!

Living in Los Angeles has taught me many things. It’s taught me that nothing is as it seems, everything is fake, the people, the “wealth,” the fame, some of the buildings.  Living here has taught me that nothing is predictable; not a job, not the people and certainly not the weather. However, at times I still fall victim to my inherent nature to think something must be predictable in this city.  I think silly things when I’m getting dressed. Silly things like, “since it is January in North America and, since the temperature has been in the 50s for the past few weeks, it’ll probably be cold to me again today so I should wear pants,  long sleeves & a light sweater.”

All these things make sense, right? Right?! I did not think twice when I left the house today that, nearing my destination, I would see people dressed in shorts and t-shirts and THEN realize, driving along in my outift consisting of pants, boots, long sleeve shirt & sweater, that it was actually 75-80 degrees outside. Smh.

What is wrong with me?!?!? I have a thermometer outside, with a temperature reading display inside my bedroom, in clear eye shot from my closet. It just now dawned on me that I will put that display in my closet as soon as I get home so I can remind myself what the weather is outside while I am getting dressed, and also remind myself to check the weather to see what the rest of the day will be like, temperature wise.

Im too old for this nonesense…and a bit hot for it today too. *rolling up sleeves, wiping sweat from brow…*

image

Inside Jokes that Pop Up Unexpectedly

MySurreaLife & Milk Bottle White

You know when you have inside jokes with friends?  We all do, right?  Well, one of my friends has a phrase that she uses to describe herself and other incredibly pale people; milk bottle white.  After years of using the expression, she has shortened it to simply, “milk bottle” when we’re out together and see some pasty pale skin like ours.

Last summer, I was driving home from work when I saw this guy on the street corner, leaving a grocery store.  I laughed so hard, thinking of my friend’s phrase “milk bottle white.”  This guy was beyond pale AND he was carrying a bottle of milk. I called her after I sent her the picture I took of her phrase standing in front of me.  She said she had been thinking of me that day & that she loved that I felt her vibes.  I love when the universe reminds me that everything is connected if we just pay close enough attention.

MySurreaLife & the Magic that is Karma

With finances tight after the holidays, I was certain I couldn’t afford both prescriptions I had to pickup at the drug store yesterday.

As I walked towards the entrance of the drug store, I saw a needy woman sitting on a carton.  She asked if I could spare some change to give her and I said I wouldn’t give her cash but that I would buy her something to eat or drink if she wanted.  She said, “oh yes!  A Dr. Pepper and a bag of….”  She just smiled at me and I said, “ok.  A Dr Pepper and a bag of something? Got it.”

I went into the store, grabbed a bag of plain potato chips, found the refrigerated area, grabbed a Dr Pepper and a bottle of water for her as well.  It was so cold and so dry; $1.80 seemed reasonable to try to also help keep the lady at least somewhat hydrated.  I walked toward the pharmacy, nervous if I had enough cash for everything.  The pharmacist ran up my prescriptions.  One ended up being a generic, which would cost me $5.00.  The other was $50.00 so I asked if he could put that one back for me to pickup at a later date.  He did & then rang up the generic prescription, the Dr. Pepper, the bottle of water and the chips & then asked for my “rewards card” (the card most stores have & try to get you to sign up for to “save you money” while they keep track of what you’re buying.)  I handed him my rewards card and he said, “ok, your total is $5.68.  I started to go into my wallet when it dawned on me that that could not be the correct total.  I explained to him that I owed him more money.  He looked at his computer screen and said, “oh no.  You had a $5.00 reward on your rewards account so that took the total down to $5.68.”

Beaming, I paid for my prescription and for the items for the lady outside.  I handed her a bag of drinks and chips and headed to my car.  As I backed out of my parking space, I watched as she munched on the chips with a smile on her face.  She waved to me as I drove past her.  I waved back and smiled at her, with relief in my heart that I gave her what I would consider just a small piece of happiness, if only for a few minutes of her life.

Karma is real.

Children Are the Best!

I just off the phone with a friend who was visiting with one of her girlfriends and her girlfriend’s 4 year old child. They met up with another friend who has twin girls about the same age.  

My friend asked one twin what her name was and the twin responded, “Lucy Cat.”  My friend asked their mother if that daughter’s middle name was Katherine or something similar and the mom responded, “oh no, she just likes to call herself that.”  My friend then asked the other twin what her name was.  The other twin responded saying, “the Princess of Chaos.” 

MySurreaLife Watching the Stars Walk By Me on the Red Carpet

MySurreaLife on the red carpet at the 70th Annual Golden Globe Awards

MySurreaLife Watching Shaun Robinson Interview Nicole Richie

MySurreaLife watching Access Hollywood on the GG red carpet 2013

MySurreaLife Watching Lucy Liu Make Her Way to Be Interviewed by OMG Insider

MySurreaLife watching Lucy Liu en route to her interview on OMG Insider at the 2013 GGlobes