I shall try and describe the setting from which I write at this moment. It is the antithesis of London. It is a small funky hotel and restaurant founded just after WWII by a woman called Mimi and the love of her life who she met very late in her life. She basically put this place together and, according to the story on the walls of the place , beat the love of her life into a state of submission to make him her devoted helpmate. One has to love the woman.
My room is up the stairs. It is a European room so the bathroom is down the hall. Friend Carol said in mock horror: A bathroom down the hall?!? I said” Yeah, I am tough. But it does have an old fashioned clay foot bath tub and I found the magical baby bath soap in the US. It is that heavenly bubble bath describing itself as calming and soothing. It does work, I sleep like a baby after my delicious soaks.
The room is rather tiny. Its best feature: a fan that blows away with much enthusiasm. I will take a picture from outside the window but probably not today. There is an ancient orange tree and a neon sign that announces: HOTEL. So it is bliss. I want to live here forever but it would be a bit impractical. Last night when I started writing the blog again music wafted up from the restaurant/bar. It was a jazz group, the music was fine and it lulled me off into an early sleep.
The night before Brian Gould’s group Swing Fever played Frank Sinatra hits. It was wonderful and what made it so incredibly special is that Brian and I worked together in the juvenile probation department forty three years ago. Well, of course, he remembered me! I had such a special time and my enjoyment was so evident that a wonderful waiter said “It would not be the same without you.” I am pretty sure that is what he said. I wrote it on my hand but the ink bled. I did not have any paper. What is a girl to do?
I broke down yesterday and rented a car. I have not been driving in London for the past two and a half years, traffic here is snarled and I was in a rebellious mood but getting around was very difficult, if not down right impossible. I tried hiring a chauffeur but he was not able to learn to drive on the right hand side of the road quickly enough. I asked Enterprise for the smallest car possible but they could only offer me a Lincoln SUV. I do not think so. I held out and instead I have a Mercedes Benz. Yes I do! Who needs a chauffeur? The last car I had before I left for London was a Mercedes. I had leased it not knowing at the beginning of the lease that I was going to London. The lease ended, I gave the car back and off I went to London. It was rather like magic. My next ambition (if the chauffeur does not work out) is to lease a Lexus. Then I shall be Alexis driving a Lexus. A noble ambition.
So I leased the car and it was off to the lawyer’s office. We just had the best of times, laughing and joking, talking about the folly of the respondent and opposing counsel. Then I fired him. I am my own attorney right now. It is not all that bad. The mission has been accomplished and I am free to wed for the fourth time. Will I do it? I doubt it as I am 73 and I still have atrocious taste in men – just the men I marry or become ‘romantically’ involved with. Otherwise I have fantastic taste in men. An example of my marvelous taste in men was lunch yesterday. I had lunch with Pete, Mario and Jim who are men who have been my friends for over fifty years. We had such a wonderful time. You have heard of Mario before. He is the one who gets to call me Lexie. I hate being called Lexie. When Gloria read my blog she wrote and said: “I will not call you that any more!” “ Its ok, Gloria,” said I. “People that really care for me, and I really care for, can call me Lexie.” I penned myself Lexy Dryburgh when writing for the Gateway newspaper at the University of Alberta in Canada. I guess because Lexy rhymes with Sexy. Ah, those were the days, I thought they would never end. They didn’t. I walked out to the car with Jm, Mario and Pete at the end of our lunch saying in an anxious voice:”Do you think I am going to be fine?” I am positive that it was Pete that said: “You are going to be fine. You ARE fine!” PHEW!
It is morning here in San Rafael. It is raining. What is this?? This morning brings me to the dentist and perhaps a wider gap. Then back to my wonderful doctor for a thorough physical. I saw him earlier in the week to learn that a chronic problem is resolvable with means other than penicillin. Phew! Not a problem at the moment.but good to know there is a solution. And he did say, this man, my doctor of over forty years: “Alexis, you are not crazy!” Perhaps I should get it in writing. i guess I could later today.
It is beginning to feel like living on the west coast of Canada is the best solution for a long term plan in my life. It is a short plane ride, this place with all of its riches. Its riches are wonderful friends, a charming hotel, doctors, dentists, financial planners and waiters.
I am not sure if you are going to be hearing from me every day. Carol said it was a bit much and pretty daunting. But then Mario told me he reads EVERYTHING as we had a huge fight a couple of months ago. He wasn’t reading any and I said: “What are you doing with you time anyway? What better things do you have to do?” (He is a retired psychiatrist). He came around but it is a lot of work and who knows how I will feel?
Not me, goodness knows.