Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Life in A Day

On Saturday, Guy and I took a whirlwind tour that took us from the country to Hollywood, Sweden, Spain and finally San Francisco. Well sort of.

We started out our day visiting my sister. It’s been a while since I have seen her, and it was on the way to our next stop, so I thought it would be nice to get together. We caught up about her kids and grandkids and perused the little shops of downtown Plant City. I used to live here when I was very wee (about 3) and spent many summers with her and my other sister in a place that was the country compared to the suburbs I lived in. In fact, at one point I was supposed to live with her and her kids when I was a teenager, but my dad nixed that and now we only see each other once in a while. She took us to a quaint restaurant called The Whistle Stop. It is so named for two reasons I suppose – its proximity to the railroad tracks and what could have once been the train station and for the book by Fannie Flagg. I didn’t see fried green tomatoes on the menu, but I did spot right off something called a Cherry Slammer (or something like that). It is soda water with a large dollop of cherry syrup to make for a brightly hued, summery-flavored concoction that I adored.

We wandered after lunch to let it settle and ambled through rows and rows of delicate antiques in the little shops that lined the streets. Guy shared tales of shooting some commercial or such there and my sister spilled the dirt about some of the locals, you know things like who is cheating on whom and who has a drinking problem and other small-town gossip. I loved it. She also took us to the fabulous organic food store The Corner Store. It is owned by a young couple and has a homey feel that makes you want to get a cup of peppermint tea and a ginger cookie and relax in the kids’ play area. Maybe once my house is paid off I can go to work in a place like that, making a couple hundred a week, eating only the best foods and meeting cool people. It’s a thought.

Next stop was at the end of our mad dash to Orlando and the Orlando Film Festival. One of Guy’s buddies directed a short film called This Man’s Life. The lead actor, Michael Rooker was amazing and he was there along with the director, Todd Thompson. Sometimes it’s funny when you recognize something from somewhere and it plays with your head all day. That is how it was when I saw Rooker. I remembered him from a film I saw 20 years ago called Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer. It haunted me all day wondering if he was the same guy and by God he was (after a short look-up on It’s odd I didn’t recognize him when they were shooting the movie (Ronn, Guy and I went to the set last year), but now it rang a bell like a loud din.

We only stayed for that one film since IKEA was calling us – or in reality, we were calling IKEA (to the tune of the Simpson’s song, “I-Key-Ya do do do dododododododododod) I am never prepared going into this Disney Land for home d├ęcor addicts. We strolled through the entire store, ate a dinner of Swedish meatballs and potatoes and finally made our purchases. Guy wondered how we were going to kill the afternoon before our next stop of this tragical history tour, but 3-1/2 hours later we were dragging our tired asses to the car with a squiggly mirror, candles in all shapes and fragrances, a few kitchen tchotchkes and a lint brush in tow. My next visit, will hopefully be to get all the stuff I need for my bathroom and kitchen since I am giving them a budgeted makeover now, because the big makeover will have to wait another 5 years. But a little new tile, new sink and new towels and such will really make the room shine.

At 6:15 we climbed into the car for what was supposed to be our last stop of the evening. Guy’s old neighbor (meaning she used to be his neighbor, not a chronological reference) is an opera singer. She lives in New York and usually performs in the city, but she took some time off from her normal gig and agreed to be in the Barber of Seville at the Polk Theatre in Lakeland. She had worked with the conductor and liked to get back to her old digs once in a while. Anne is one of the most beautiful people I know. I had seen her in only one performance before, La Traviatta and that had been about 5 years ago. The last time I saw her, she paid a visit to Guy’s house one summer evening in 2006. The reason I remember it so clearly is because it was when Guy and I were addicted to Channel Four’s Celebrity Big Brother 4 with Pete Burns, Jodie Marsh, Dennis Rodman and Chantelle. We got hooked on it while flying to Anchorage and only doled out a few episodes at a time to keep the buzz running. On that evening we had taken extra long to watch an episode since we had to chat about each act. Anne came over and drew us back to reality. God I loved that show!!!!

On Saturday, we were dressed in shorts and tees and had to find a place to change for the upscale performance. Guy pulled into a closed furniture store parking lot and we proceeded to disrobe and then get dressed again, all in a matter of minutes. It was a touch scary since we were exposing ourselves in public and it was a touch suspicious at the closed store. I am sure there is some interesting camera footage floating around that place. Guy kept it light though with his usual sense of humor. “Whatever you do, if the cops show up just tell them we were having sex,” he said. “Why?” I asked. “If we tell them we’re married to other people and just having sex they will think nothing of it. Just don’t say we are changing clothes to go to the opera.” I got it. Polk County is not known for its diverse thinking, but they are known for hate crimes and redneck teens beating each other up while on tape. Now you see the point in the lie.

The opera was great and I only slept through about 20 minutes of the second half (it was a long day and I was cold.) We paid our respects to Anne and got a couple pictures of the cast and off to home. Of course we had to make a pit stop on the way since we were so close to Georgie’s and we had both gone all day without a drink. Georgie’s was fabulous and packed with Madonna and Kylie streaming across the air. We each had a Maker’s Mark Manhattan and relived the wonders of the day.

It has been a while since Guy and I hung out, mainly because we both have men in our lives and we prefer to spend time making these romances grow (or at least fake like we are doing that.) I missed his companionship a lot.

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