Monday, June 21, 2010

Fire & Rain to FIRE!

Carole King & James Taylor Reunion at The Troubadour in L.A.: Great to see them together, to see them in such an intimate setting, to see them so loving and appreciative of each other.  And the original band backing them up as did fifty years ago??  Let's hear it for longevity!  I have to say that for me Carole's rendition of "I Feel The Earth Move" solo, pumping away at that piano, was the peak.
Other great musical offerings on PBS last week:  Pavarotti: A Life in Seven Arias; Elaine Paige Onstage:
check out her performance from Sunset Boulevard, the musical.  Gloria Swanson, I think, would've been thrilled, for Paige really DID Gloria doing Norma Desmond.  The flare of the eyes, that faraway look, that just-a-little-wild grin.  I had never seen Elaine Paige before, but now I am a convert.
To FIRE: It's June in Arizona, big fire month.  We almost made it through without a threat, but now there are fires close enough, in Flagstaff, to be threatening should the daily wind change direction and blow south.
We are putting together emergency evacuation bags in case we have to get out quickly.  Last time, we had five minutes to leave!  Hope it doesn't happen here this year.
All for now, gotta pack!

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

What a Birthday!

Hey, y'all!  Just back from two wonderful days on the road in Northern Arizona!  Got a surprise mystery trip to Winslow as a gift for my 63rd birthday. Now, you might think there's nothin' in Winslow worth writing about, but, listen up, my friends, because one of the most wonderful hotels in the world is right there: Mary Jane Coulter's La Posada!  It is a historic complex that reflects the early days of train travel in the West.  Originally a Fred Harvey hotel, it still has it's Harvey Girls, and Boys, serving in the five-star restaurant, and the overall ambience is out of this world. 
Designed by Ms. Coulter to reflect the great haciendas of the Southwest, rooted in the Spanish but influenced by Mexican and local architecture and lifestyle, La Posada IS the experience!  Each hotel room is named for a famous person who stayed there.  For example: Carole Lombard, Clark Gable, Bob Hope, Jane Russell, Howard Hughes, and President Truman!  Gotta love that! 
So what does one do there?  Oh, bask in the sun (or shade) on the patio in the afternoon, rest, read, nap afterwards, or during.  Dress casually for an exquisite meal in The Turquoise Room, stroll in the gardens after dinner and watch the trains pass right by what used to be--in the heyday of Superchief's--the front entrance, dance to classical guitar music in the lounge, watch the stars (not Carole or Clark, but the original ones up there in the vast night sky), sleep like a baby.  Rise at dawn to see the sun making its way above the never-ending horizon, breakfast on baked eggs topped with melted cheese served on a bed of spinach nestled on creamy polenta with a house-baked cinnamon roll and silky hot chocolate made in the espresso machine. Stroll down to "Standin' on a corner in Winslow, Arizona..." and take some pictures, then check out the trackside train park complete with red cabooses (cabeese?) and gazebo, make your way back to Posada and settle on the porch bordering the spacious, grassy, cottonwood grove to play a game of cards, nod off, or wait for the BN&SF, Burlington Northern & Santa Fe, to roll by and set your imagination to wandering.
Now, many make La Posada their base for visiting the Grand Canyon, Painted Desert, Monument Valley, and other fabuolous sites in the area-great choice!  I, however, go to La Posada to inhabit La Posada.
Nothing could please me more than to wake-up there on my birthday morning!  Or any morning! 
Do yourself a favor and book it now!
Love to you all,