Holy travel Gods….woke up on my own free will at 7 am. No mom guilting me for sleeping the day away or cold diet coke or buttery grits being waved by my face. I’m that excited. Today I have one VERY touristy stop to make then taking the train out to a cute little community.
I packed plenty of cute sundresses, though I’m actually wearing the same outfit over and over. Tights, tank and open button up. Yep, I knew this would happen. No one knows me here. What do I care?
Amazing day today. I went to Hampton Court to visit the man we all love to hate. Henry 8th. I’d never been before. The gardens were the prettiest I’ve
EVER seen. Despite the rain, I loved every minute in the river community.
Everything was relaxed and low key. I spent the evening with a tour guide I met on the bus who plays a confederate war doctor in American civil war reenactments here in England. Fascinating.
Lunch at cute French style casual London chain
I love quiet time, but if I don’t find ways to entertain myself on the flight I start to slowly lose my mind. I twitch, itch and drive the person sitting next to me as crazy as I am. So, along with my head pillow, I have one book and two movies for the flight there. I’m pretty pumped.
The book is really good so far, and not my typical read. It’s called the Red Book written by Deborah Copaken Kogan. It just came out this month. Here’s my very rough description. Four women with very different backgrounds are preparing for their 20 or 25 year reunion at Harvard. They were all roommates there. Many of them have only been in touch through this book called “the red book” where they update their lives every five years. It’s a real book mailed to them. It’s about how we put the good things out there for the world to see, gloss over the bad, sad, unfortunate and tragic. I like the characters. They are smart women.
I think this is going to be a good one. It did really well at Cannes. I rented it before I read a lot about it. I think it might be a little bit adult. Which is fine, I guess, I am over 18, but jeez can I handle all that on the plane?
A little action. Again I know nothing of it, other than the fact it’s set in Europe and there is a lot of shooting. Both things I like in a movie.
I’m a terrible packer in the best situation. I get overwhelmed with thoughts of what I want to wear while in my destination. All the while knowing I’m going to want to wear the most comfortable thing everyday on the trip. With no one going with me this time, I’ll be even more tempted to slum it in the same outfit. I’ll look good, but good in the same dress. The only people who will know will be the hotel staff or anyone too close to me on the bus, I’m joking!! I’m bringing perfume. Still, tonight has been rough. I’m pooped. You see I had a packing wrench thrown in on me at the last-minute.
One of my closets :: the big one that holds all my dresses :: crashed the other day. We’re talking a lot of clothes. This fix is beyond my fixing capabilities and my landlords are on a vacation of their own. So, I sifted through this intimidating heap of clothes, finding all but one of the items I want to take with me. I think the pile swallowed my pleated black skirt I had my heart set on wearing to dinner one night.
My big concern now is that my landlord will be coming to fix my closet while I’m gone :: meaning I can’t leave my apartment a ransacked hell hole like I normally do when I pack for a trip.
Still, I think I’m pretty much packed and ready to go, all but my makeup I left at the office. Eeeek on my to do list for the morning. What I don’t look forward to is my suitcase sitting in my doorway for an entire two weeks after I return, but hey, I don’t have to think about that yet. For the third night in a row I get to sleep in my guest room :: I like to pretend I’m in someone’s house visiting :: until I wake up and no one is cooking me grits and bacon.
This room gets the best light
You know those crazy artists. They are never really done. After harassing him all week, I forced my bud Lamar to be done. He changed my dress color to white. Much more wholesome. Here they are. He did a large and small.
I leave tomorrow for my trip to England. Sorry I keep writing about it, but hey, it’s my life and it’s what I have going on. In keeping theme my Fantastic Music Friday post features my all time favorite band THE CURE from Crawley in the South.
I know we all have memories of The Cure. Well, I guess my older friends would. I was 12 when I first heard them.
My first taste was Wild Mood Swings which came out that year. Mom and Dad bought a used copy for me from Bebop Music by Edgewater Mall in Biloxi. I thought it was such a cool place. It was right on the water and all the music posters made me feel kinda edgy. You know what I mean. Kind of the same way it felt to wear a ying yang necklace. Or am I the only one?
I eventually figured out the songs were quite different from theirs from the 80’s and early 90’s. Still, I couldn’t get enough of them. I became obsessed with Robert Smith. Maybe it was all a joke, but there was something to it. I had a huge poster on my bedroom door. It was full color so his makeup was very harsh. My poor mom just didn’t get it. She still rolls her eyes a bit. He’s just hot hot hot (listen), yes, a reference to the song I use to always request from our top 40 station on the MS coast. I can’t believe they played it. It was just unlike anything I had ever heard or could find. I looked and looked and now am still mostly pulled to music with an electric feel with synthesizers. I’ll be 80 dancing around and snapping. Those who have seen me dance know exactly what I’m talking about.
I love all cure records. I could post links to so many, but instead, I’m going to assume you’ve heard them, but that most of my friends never gave this record much of a chance. Here’s your opportunity.
The Cure :: Mint Car :: listen
I recorded this song on a tape from the radio. I heard this one and I thought this is exactly how I feel about life! I mean, come on, the first line is, “The sun is up I’m so happy I could scream. There’s nowhere else in the world I’d rather be.” It might as well be called the happy song. This version is a cute little live version. Nice to watch Robert.
The Cure :: Strange Attraction :: listen
I still know every word in this song. I love it. I can’t listen to it without getting all dramatic and pretending like I’m acting out a play. You’ll see. It tells a very clear story of lost love.
The Cure :: Numb off of Wild Mood Swings :: listen
Numb is about addiction. It’s sad. It’s strong. I was so young to feel all the things it made me feel.
The Cure :: The 13th :: listen
The 13th is such a playful little tune. It’s a dancer. We are now transported to South America. We are sipping cold drinks and dancing. You hear it? I can only find a live version on youtube, but it is something amazing, especially for this time of year. Don’t you just love the horns! A great climax, too.
A friend I’ve never actually met, other than on facebook and twitter, sent me a list of fantastic things to do in London. I leave Saturday and really haven’t properly made plans yet. Not that I’m much of a travel planner, but I would like to spend my time doing and not researching. I did a lot of the touristy things when I as there last time. It’s amazing how well people can get to know you just through the web. This list includes all his favorite markets, places for music, good walks and quiet spots that I will no doubt love. Thank you!!
I had a little cry tonight. It was a nice cry. It was a reflective cry. No sobbing. No gross runny nose or headache.
A friend tweeted me a secret solo of George Harrison’s from Here Comes the Sun.
You know how late night web time works. One thing led to another and I was looking at picture after picture of George. This song then that song.
He was so special. His songs have always made me feel so raw, a part of something so big.
I got to All Things Must Pass
I just talked to a friend of mine the other night about loss and life and how we as humans have to deal with knowing loss is inevitable.
I’m not necessarily talking about death, but about moments, seasons, weekends, jobs, loves, friendships, youth, days
I was 25 when I finally came to grips with the idea that it all ends. The good and the bad. When I finally let this sink in I found comfort.
I’ve never been good with endings. The idea is just so harsh, but I’m getting better. I’m becoming more appreciative.
If I really notice the good. Really feel the breeze and think about how the breeze feels on my skin, I can remember it when the air is still and hot.
Darkness only stays at nighttime
In the morning it will fade away
Daylight is good at arriving
At the right time
It’s not always
Going to be this grey
Now that I’ve made you want to poke your eyes out
Listen to My Sweet Lord and smile
Well, not really. I just like to pretend. That’s my dream. I want that garden I imagined as a little girl and then again as an older little girl in college when I read, The Secret Garden. In my mind’s eye there is color everywhere. Ivy is growing in every crack, brick and wall. The stone and brick around the yard is all dark and worn. The trees are so old they hang over the yard like a tent for my own little celebration. You can feel the spirits of all the people who loved the land just as much as you do, but from a different time. Maybe they dreamed there, smiled there, cried there or just looked with wonder as I do. We’re never alone. The history of it all is always with us.
I’m celebrating these little beauties. I planted them early September. They are back and more glorious than ever.
Most reporters live for breaking news. I know I do and always have. I got lucky because Action News 5 is the breaking news station in Memphis. When we get details of a breaking situation our team moves into ACTION like a well oiled machine. It’s fascinating to watch and amazing to be a part of . Chopper 5 is up in the air. The emails are fast and informative. The producers are on the phone explaining what they need and giving me all the latest information they are getting back at the station.
It was one of those situations this evening. I got off the set at 5pm from anchoring my daily hour-long 4 pm show. Photog Chris and I were assigned to cover a story in Arkansas so we swung by Lenny’s to grab dinner for the road. I’d paid and was waiting on Chris when three or four police cars sped by the shop. One or two cars wouldn’t phase me, but four….I knew it was something. Within seconds my phone was ringing. And like that :: our day changed. An officer had been shot while chasing a carjacking suspect.
We hustled to the scene and were met by our live truck. I had about 20 minutes to talk to witnesses and gather as much info as I could before I went live from the scene at the top of the 6 pm news. The link below is what we were able to do in a matter of 20 minutes. There wasn’t a lot of information, but thanks to our resources were able to show you the scene, the scene from the air and the officer being wheeled into the MED, our hospital, all LIVE. Powerful TV. Powerful team. It’s tough because most of the video I’m talking about in the show below I haven’t seen and can’t see at the time. I’m relying on what my producer is telling me about it in my ear :: all while continuing what I’m saying. In this situation there was so much noise around me, I could barely hear her, but that’s how it is.
It doesn’t end with this. As soon as the shot was off me, photog Chris and I had to start working on our 10 pm newscast. The police department then held a fast interview where we were finally able to get solid details. The actual who, what, when, where and why. Next, we had to get interviews from people who live in the area and actually heard or saw the shots fired. People are always very hesitant to go on television, so this can be an exhausting part of the job. There were so many people standing around and you literally just have to go up to everyone and ask if they saw or heard anything. A number of them will always say something rude to you, but in the end it’s the job. With all my elements in hand, I now had to write my story for the 10 pm newscast.
This is where I write
Cramped up in our live truck
I’m leaning against the dash :: very campy
I usually write my package on my i-phone and send it to my producer. Once she (the awesome Samantha) gives it the go ahead, I record my voice for my story in the truck. Then it’s up to photog Chris to work his magic.
This is Chris Mitchell :: My main man :: referred to as Photog Chris on my social media posts
While he edits our story, I update facebook and twitter with my story information and prepare for my 10 pm live shot. Here’s our final product tonight. Forget looking good. I couldn’t even keep my hair out of my eyes. I’m lucky I got some lipstick on.
I realized right before my hit that I was standing in ants :: yep, did the ant dance
So glad they don’t record in the minutes before we go live
Tonight I was so mentally tired. I rushed home to put on my pajamas and eat ice cream straight out of the carton. I wish my buds and mom and dad could come along for one of these evenings. Not that I’d have time to chat, but I’d like them to see how fast and detailed it all is. There aren’t boring days in this job. I really love what I do. The stories we cover are often terrible and upsetting, but it’s the fact gathering and process of getting it on air that I’ve yet to get bored with. I don’t think I ever will. It’s that intense. Until next time.
I saw this simple and sweet craft project at a house in Midtown. The homeowner was out digging in her flower garden and was more than thrilled to chat about it. Simple as can be. She drew designs on her eggs and added beads to the string. Egg-stra cute.