In fact it was a couple of things that reminded me today, that the last time I flew anywhere, was a year ago tonight, when I took the flight from Atlanta, to Manchester, having first crossed the US, from Los Angeles. And yes, the best bit, that when I fly again (probably next May, unless things happen beyond my belief), not only will I have a new name, but a new gender too. Ironically, the only thing that will be the same will be the city at the other end of the flight, Los Angeles.
Yes, one of the things that reminded me was Facebook, and their ‘on this day’ thing, which I hate, but still find very useful, I must admit. Though in fact, they’d been beaten to it, by a couple of Americans, on ‘Pardon The Interruption’ this morning, though that was actually yesterdays edition, but fine, they mentioned the anniversary of the first game of last years World Series, between the Mets, and my Royals, because it lasted over 5 hours, went 14 innings, and yes, I watched all of it while preparing to fly back home to England. Yes, the advantage I had then, it started at 5 in the afternoon, my time, instead of 1 in the morning, as it does now!
At present, its still the only World Series game I’ve seen live (only on TV), though hopefully at some point in the future, there might be more? Yes, the Royals won, went on to be champions, and as they say, the rest is history! The next morning, I got up early, had breakfast, and waited for the shuttle to take me back to the airport, and home!
Funnily enough, one year on, today, I finished my training course for my new job, and start my regular hours on Monday. Yes, a later start, so a later rising time, but a later finish too. How it will work out time wise, for other things, I will have to wait and see. But I still plan to do this on my 2 days off, before any blog readers show concern. Should be Tuesday, and Sunday in future, for those who care!
But I just wanted to say a quick thanks to 2 men I love watching, Tony Kornheiser, and Mike Wilbon, for reminding me this morning of that amazing match, and wonderful place I watched it.
Yes, this time last year, I was in the air tonight, so there is one obvious video. A recent live version, ooh!
OK, so lets catch up on things so far. Not that there was really much to report for the first couple of days, but after today, there’s more than enough lol.
Wednesday: Flights were smooth enough, the bit in between was entertaining though. Now I knew that when I got to Atlanta, I could go to the automated machines to pass through Immigration, and that was the plan. Only…I ran into Miss Jobsworth, who insisted I had to go join the lengthy queue to go through Immigration in the old fashioned way. So, 15 minutes took an hour and a half, only to be told by the guy on the desk that I neednt be doing this. When I told him I knew that, and told him what had happened, his comment was something akin to “You must have run into…”, and he passed me through very quickly. Then when I finally got to security, something set the machine off (I have no idea what?), which slowed me even more. Eventually a 2.5 hour gap before boarding for the LA plan, ended up being just under 20 minutes!
Oh, and the shuttle. Now, whether the guy had given the right address or not (I think we ended up dropping him at the East address, and he’d given it as West), but the sat-nav didnt want to go in the right direction. Eventually the guy sorted out where he wanted to be, and we dropped him off. Finally (3rd drop in van), we got to me, but despite telling her we were at the right place, she sailed by, and in a narrow road, it took her a while to find somewhere to turn round. But finally, about 9.30, I arrived.
The apartment is cute, and I love it, but the bed really is something else. I knew I had to climb up (literally) to get into it, but its even better than the picture suggested. I will have to move the cases, and take a picture sometime! That was it, grabbed nightwear, and to bed. Bed is very comfortable, btw.
Yesterday, really little happened.I got unpacked, and settled in. Did some shopping, caught up on the net, and…not a lot else. I did go down to the Boulevard in the afternoon, but principally for a very nice ice cream, and that was it. I did go and visit Jean’s prints at the Chinese Theatre, and her star across the road, but that really was it.
So to today. The one main place I wanted to visit last time, and didnt get to, was Long Beach. Mainly to see the Queen Mary, but it looked an interesting trip anyway. Oh, right, for those with a memory, the metro line goes through Watts, and Compton. Made for an interesting crowd on the train, shall we say? Yes, I survived, and got to see an English lady, far older than me, the Queen Mary! No, I didnt go on board, I am trying to be sensible with money, and $27 minimum to get on board (for not that long) seemed a bit daft to me. But I paid my respects.
The weekend should be relatively calm, though I will have to go shopping for bread, if nothing else tomorrow. Beyond that, a little college football on TV is quite likely. Hopefully, my team (Kansas State) against Kate’s team (Oklahoma State), but not sure if I will get that here? Sunday, a mix of NFL on TV (there is a game in London, which kicks off 6.30 am, my time), and meeting up with someone I met in April early afternoon, is promising me a tour, which I suspect is either going to be going up near the sign, or more likely something Jean related. More on that on Monday or Tuesday, I’m sure. I may, or may not get to the Dodgers baseball tomorrow night, we shall see.
Fine, the video. Well, I could cheekily say this is about me!
Right, firstly, as is tradition now, when on holiday, the 2 blogs align, this time for 10 days or so, so no point reading both, as a message to the few who know both!
Secondly, and I think this an age thing, as like me, this laptop is getting old, and so its not working as well. As far as I can tell (and I am not an expert, it seems to be a card issue, mainly graphics, but the sound doesnt seem too bright either), its had enough, and I will replace it with the one I bought 18 months ago off Dave, when I get back. I hate change, mainly because of all the log ins I have to suddenly write down, or remember, and aargh!
So if things stop completely, do not panic, its more likely the computer than me. Especially as the shutdown button no longer works, along with the image thing that appears in the right hand corner when new emails arrive. But enough of my woes…
Fine, the holiday!
Yesterday was travel day, and I reminded myself why I’ve cut right back on West Coast trips, the body (like this computer) really isnt up to it anymore. Even travelling in relative luxury for me (not basic economy), my knees were screaming for relief at the end of the flights, though my back was surviving better. Ah well, swings and roundabouts, as they say.
As to Virgin Atlantic, cant say enough in praise, good staff all around, and more than enough food to feed me for quite a while. Then we got to Atlanta!
Last time, I got through immigration, customs, and security there in a whir, about 15 minutes. Yesterday, when I had less time to spare, 80!I literally ran half the length of terminal A at Atlanta (and it felt a long way, with a laptop bag in hand), expecting to have just missed the plane to LA, but instead, the last couple were boarding, and I, along with another very delayed lady, just about got on.
To be honest, thats the end of the bad news, apart from a misdirection at baggage claim here in LA, where I rashly assumed the people in front of me knew where they were going, but they didnt! Soon in the right place, soon got the bags, and the shuttle was an absolute stroll! Good staff at the airport, good driver, and…Oh, the hotel room is seriously large!
Therefore today, I decided I was going to get the knees loose, with a nice long walk along, and then back along Hollywood Boulevard. It seems to have worked, though the back is complaining a bit more, so…
Ah, the camera, when I switched it on here this morning, 2 bars out of 3, so I left the batteries in. Snag was, after 1 photo, it was down to 1 bar, and after a couple more, it stopped working altogether…just as I was trying to get a photo of Jean’s star! So fine, I will go back and get it, even if my friend, April had already sent me one, but to have one, I took…
I did the tour of the wax museum, but most of them were modern names, not really what I was hoping for, especially as Monroe was featured everywhere in the entrance, I was hoping for more older stars, but…
It says it all, it hit 80 today, and I wilted. Mainly because I was out in the sun a lot, and being April, things havent really warmed up at home yet. So about 2.30, I called it quits, and came back to the hotel for a while. Beyond going out for dinner, thats it.
Tomorrow, I’ll do the guided tour thing, just to get all my bearings, before I set out on my own. But again, it will mainly be the modern stars, so, I’ll just live with it. Plan, if I can get there, is Dodgers baseball tomorrow night, so you might either get an early one tomorrow, or nothing until Saturday, before the big event.
Well, thats let you catch up on things, so for now, I’ll leave you in peace! The video, what I nearly didnt have enough of, yesterday
Yes, you all know what I mean, the Transatlantic flight.
To be honest, it all went very smoothly, I hope thats a good sign for the rest of the week.
OK, smoothly, in one sense, hmm…?
Every other US airport I’ve been through, you queue up nicely for your turn with the immigration official, do as you’re told, and move on. Nope, in Atlanta, for those of us who have already used our ESTA thing, we can use this machine to do all that.
All fine, but it didnt want to know with one of my finger prints, and the photo was a battle too, to get the right distance away etc, but after that… Seriously, I have never passed through immigration, and customs as swiftly as that, in my life! Even re doing security at Atlanta was quick. Shame is, I have to do Philadelphia in 2 months time, and I suspect that wont be as easy!
Beyond that, not much to say, met Kate, rode to hotel with Kate, and had bite to eat. Then got up to date on here, and went to bed. Bed is amazing, and huge, I could easily do the Harlow sprawl on there, as below, with ease
No, I havent got that nightwear though!
And really, for now, thats it! Baseball game later today, which along with any other Sunday happenings, will be mentioned in the next blog.
The video, guess which state Atlanta is in?
So fine, sue me, its a lie, until tomorrow, I’ve never been to the place. Well, not in this life at least! But who knows what might have happened in a past life, and yes, just maybe I’m thinking of one particular person, however unlikely that will be the case, when I do a past life regression later this year.
But yes, for Jean Harlow at least, finding her way home to Kansas City would be a reality, as of course, thats where she was born in 1911. Alright, strictly, Harlean Carpenter was born in Kansas City, in 1911, but with a change of name (and a boost in fame), it was Jean. It was her mother’s name in fact, which is where she took it from, when getting her first audition in Hollywood. And as they say, the rest is history!
Beyond the obvious, I know very little about the city, so it will be interesting to see if I show any amount of familiarity to the place. Mind, given how much would have changed over the 100 years, beyond obvious landmarks (her homes, for example), there probably isnt much remaining that Jean would recognise anyway. But yes, I’m looking forward to seeing the modern city, with interest, I must admit.
Oh, and fine, I know most know it anyway, but the fact that most of Kansas City, isnt in Kansas amuses me no end. Harlow in fact lived in houses in the city, on both sides of the state line.
As Dorothy said, in a certain film, there’s no place like Kansas.
True, not many places are that flat!
But the charms of Kansas, most particularly Cherryvale wait in store for me too. A trip to the birthplace of Louise Brooks is just going to be amazing, I know.
Neither however, will be the first new state for me on this visit, that will be Georgia, if only as a transit through Atlanta Airport. All in all, one state short of halfway, in the sense of visiting US states for me.
Yes, the whole thing is a trip I’m looking forward to greatly, and getting to meet up again with Kate will be super too.
But fine, the video, is a moment where I look at Kansas City on the map, step into Jean Harlow’s shoes, and say, somehow I’ve found my way home.