Wednesday, May 4, 2011

The Italian Widow Travels...but not lightly.

Here I am at Gerald R. Ford International airport ready to begin our California adventure. Normally, I accompany Steve to So. Cal. on his annual meeting each January or February. I gobble up his frequent flyer miles and sit in the hotel in complete silence for a week while he is in meetings for Open Doors. Sometimes I revea my identity as one from the Midwest, land of long lingering winter, by sitting, SOLO at the pool, my pale whale belly legs exposed for all to see. Last year I was joined by a sole middle aged man who displayed an equally white but quickly pinking body as he actually swam in the pool. ( I could feel the Californians sneer!) But hey, it's the SUN!!!!
I have always been mystified by my Californian friends' comments, apologies really that what I am in awe of blooming in February is their dead winter. I have been told that this trip in May will open my eyes to real southern Californian vegetation. Like. ( ...that's as close as I get to facebook.)
Recent weight loss coupled with the switching of seasons has had me on the hunt for clothing. I've had problems lately with the grandbabies ( the one's who can walk) grabbing at my skirts and the skirts sliding down my hips. not cool. This hunt revealed again my seemingly irresistible , magnet pull toward any clothing of BLACK. I hit the jackpot early in my search finding newly tagged Clearance merchandise in a downtown shop and had piles of chic but newly cheap clothing stacked ready to be tried on in a dressing room. The helpful clerk, eyes half closed, quietly mentioned, "It's looking pretty BLACK in there..." Well, no surprise to me; the Swede disguising herself as the Italian widow....without a babushka.

I recall a special occasion as a little girl being taken to the "Tiny Tots To Teens" store downtown to pick a special dress for a birthday I think. My choice...( think '50's people) was soft turquoisy sheer fabric with black velvet polka dots and black velvet skirt. I loved it, instantly. I still recall how much my MOM hated it! My mother hates black clothing...especially on babies or children. I can still see that dress with it's little puffy sleeves and the black, patent leather Maryjane's and white anklets. PERFECT!

Fast forward to the '70's and learning the importance of proper presentation to Interior Design clients. Do Not distract or taint the true colors of the product you present to your clients with flashy dress. In other wards...wear black. I was in heaven. Did I tell you how much I like BLACK?
Unfortunately there is a price to pay...all those fabric books and sample lugging make an Interior Designer dressed in black a walking lint brush. truly.

So, now I can't seem to break the habit. Even though I purchased some colorful new pieces of clothing I have a humongous suitcase packed with black and white and a very little khaki. And five pairs of black shoes/sandals to cover every occasion: Lunch with a friend on Cinco De Mayo, our youngest son's Grad School Hooding ceremony and dinner following at Azusa Pacific University, adding to our collection of Presidential Library visits with the Reagan Library, dinner with bosses, and best of all, time spent visiting my favorite place, the Mission of San Juan Capistrano with Steve , Christian and Emily ( soon to be Mrs. Fredericks ).
What can I say?


  1. I know you'll have a wonderful time!!!
    And, you look great in black : )

  2. Enjoy the California sun! I expect to see blogging. :)

  3. things i LOVE (not LIKE, LOVE) about this post:
    1. you getting away on a much deserved mini-vacay
    2. BLACK..I, too, LOVE black. adam always says i need more color in my closet...what does he know?!
    3. that i have TWO more posts to read.

    hope you're having a fabulous time in socal! xoxo