Frances whisked us off to the movies. The wipers weren't working and it was the first rain Southern Cali had seen in months. The rain they missed came all at one time as if the state needed to make up for lost liters in record time. So our sight was a bit restricted.
Leona is my dear friend and she has been sharing Sister Frances and Mamma Gloria stories while we perch on a cozy love seat at her hip restaurant Slide Inn as we sip a big red or two -- for years. Leona loves to have fun. She's full of life -- an artist, a storyteller, an esthetician and a sommelier. She has a contagious laugh. I feel so lucky to know Leona. She can share a story of losing plane tickets, spraining her ankle on a curb running to get a chai tea with soy and two honeys, and jumping out of a slowing moving car on a family vacation to Italy when she had had just enough togetherness and make the expressed scene hilarious. She coerced me into one of her intense workout classes-pyro something or other with a special machine and 50 Shades S&M straps to keep students tied down. I lost my balance and smashed my chin and bled all over my little torture station. I laughed, mostly from humiliation and next because Leona was next to me and made it all seem so fabulously absurd despite the needed butterfly bandages. She's laugh therapy when life isn't fabulous. She's laugh therapy when life is. There's just something about a dear friend that makes you snort with joy, isn't there? I think I'll keep her.
Gloria made these two great ladies for the world to know. Leona and Frances' mama is an extraordinary example of the name fitting the person phenomenon. The name Gloria arrives to us from the Latin word "Glory." Go Girl Gloria and her honey picked us up at LAX. Gloria asked her man why he had taken such and such route rather than the one she had anticipated we were taking. Yes, this is a normal scene between lovers, but not this two some. Gloria can't see with her eyes. She has Macular, which has robbed her of seeing the route and everything else the world shows us in 3-D. Gloria was a sculptress in the '60s and '70s and raised her children in New York. She is brilliant and such fun. Her man is wicked smart, the winner on the television show Jeopardy over and over. He knows everything, literally everything. His brain can locate the answers to all information he has ever read or encountered and then some. We didn't use Google when we were faced with an unknown fact during our days together. We asked Stephan. One of the many tidbits I tucked in from my weekend with Gloria; add Google Man to your list, Kay. You like smart, she says, and you deserve A Google Smart Man. Added to My List. After freshening up at Frances', I walked by the living room on my way to the kitchen and I heard Stephan reading to Gloria and discussing the book between pages, all so she could keep up with her book club book without having to see the words. Such sweetness, yes?
We went out for a delicious dinner and Gloria insisted we go out to the Continental Club, downtown LA's swanky spot post meal. It's a dark descent into this magical place. Gloria held Stephan's hand, more for him, she's used to the dark. She ordered a Whisky Sour. "Purple Rain" came on through the fancy music system. Gloria tapped her foot. Then she started dancing in her seat. Her honey helped her up so she could dance to Prince. And she did. She keeps on keeping on no matter her sight challenges. I am inspired to dance, even in the dark thanks to Gloria.
Here's to the Glorious tree and her two apples that fell near. Thank you to the Glorias of the world. For the beautiful manner in which you decide to live your life, despite your lack of sight and "seeing" more than most of us with 20/20.