Farewell to Palms

Madame, all stories, if continued far enough,
end in death, and he is no true-story teller
who would keep that from you.”

Ernest Hemingway

Farewell to Palms

The landscape crew began work on the landscape renovation. Every morning we are awaken by cement drilling and chainsaws.

We were notified of the renovation, but none of us were aware of how much pollution from sound and debris this would entail.

We’ve lived in our place for over ten years and everyday we watched the world through a beautiful seventy-five foot Fruit of the date palm tree. Today is a very sad day for me because they cut and removed the palm from our view.

Our Palm Tree

My husband never liked how the palm tree blocked our view and was a haven for crows, squirrels and other critters. I liked the tree because it gave us shelter from the hot sun during the late afternoons and I liked all the birds and squirrels. One year we even had a momma squirrel raise her family of babies in the tree. See my post: Squirrel Family

I realize it’s just a tree and there’s other more important things in life. I know nothing lasts for ever, but it still doesn’t make it easier to say farewell to palms.

Shine On

The Comedy of Steve Martin

“Comedy may be big business but it isn’t pretty.”
Steve Martin

Comedy Isn't Pretty

There’s times in our lives  when we remember every little detail of a day. That day for me was September 29th 1979.

A gentleman client of the company I worked for was smitten with me. He knew I was married, but after several attempts by this man to take me to lunch, he just wouldn’t take no for an answer, so I went to lunch with him on September 29th.

While at lunch he mentioned that his father was a CEO at Universal Studios. I remember him asking me who my favorite entertainer was? That was easy, Steve Martin was my favorite. Martin recently appeared on SNL and had sung his famous King Tut song. I can remember us mostly talking about Steve Martin at lunch and how much I enjoyed his type of humor.

Later that afternoon, my gentleman friend called to tell me he had left me two tickets that evening at will call at the Universal Amphitheatre.  I was shocked and overjoyed and couldn’t thank him enough. He told me that he was happy to get me the tickets and wanted my husband and me to have a good time.

When we arrived at Universal that evening and picked up the tickets, I never realized where the seats were located until we walked into the Amphitheatre and walked from the top of the stadium down to the bottom. We were seated front and center, one row from the stage.

We also didn’t realize that The Blues Brothers were opening for Steve Martin that evening, so we got a double treat. Seated directly in front of us was Steve Martin’s personal photographer. Throughout Martin’s performance I was laughing quite loud and he kept turning around smiling at me knowing how much I was enjoying the show.

At the end of Steve’s balloon animal routine, Steve Martin handed the photographer the balloons from his routine. Without hesitation, the man turned around to me and asked if I wanted the balloons? Sure, I said. I couldn’t stop screaming with joy and hugged and thanked him.

I kept those balloon animals for years, until they were just shriveled up rubber stuck together and deflated. I’ll never forget that evening and how I laughed and smiled until my jaw and cheeks hurt by the time I got home.

Recently, I found a YouTube video from that warm September night with the memorable comedy of Steve Martin.

Shine On

Farmers Market – The Original

“Prosperous farmers mean more employment,
more prosperity for the workers and the business men
of every industrial area in the whole country.”
Franklin D. Roosevelt

Farmers Market - The Original

When I first arrived in California back in 1967, one of the most famous places I loved to visit was at Third & Fairfax. Any good Angeleno knows what has been at this corner since 1880.

It was back in 1880 that A. F. Gilmore and a partner bought two dairy farms in the Los Angeles area. The partners elected to split their holdings ten years later and Mr. Gilmore took control of the large 256-acre ranch, its dairy herd and farmhands at what is now the world famous corner of Third & Fairfax known as the Farmers Market.

When A. F. Gilmore wanted to expand his dairy herd in 1900, he started drilling new wells for water. He discovered oil. Quickly, the dairy herd was replaced by a field of oil derricks which remained in place until Los Angeles’s boundaries expanded to surround the Gilmore property. Although the rich oil field continued to generate crude, the derricks were no longer permitted on a large scale.

The Gilmore property remained largely vacant into the 1930s, when at the height of the Depression, two entrepreneurs, Fred Beck and Roger Dahlhjelm, approached A.F.’s son, Earl Bell (E.B.) Gilmore, with “an idea.”

Fred Beck & Roger Dahlhjelm wanted to build a “Village” at the corner of Third & Fairfax where local farmers could sell their fresh fare. Gilmore agreed to give it a go. In July 1934, a dozen farmers and a few other merchants parked their trucks at the corner of Third & Fairfax and sold their fresh produce from the back of the trucks.

By October 1934, mere months after it opened, farmers and merchants, including restaurants, grocers and service providers, were moving into permanent stalls and the new Farmers Market was so popular that its founders staged a celebration, the first Fall Festival at Farmers Market.

While it grew to be a must-see destination for travelers from around the world, Farmers Market was always the favorite place for L.A. families to shop for groceries.

The Clock Tower became an icon of the Farmers Market in 1948. Over the decades, it has become a worldwide symbol of food and fun.

My photo of the clock tower features the iconic phrase “An Idea”, a humble nod to Fred Beck, Roger Dahlhjelm and the 18 original tenants who helped forever shape the corner of the Farmers Market – the original.

FM FountainFM StatueFM Closeup

Shine On