With very high temperatures and strong warm winds -the Santa Anas , brush fires have been ravaging Southern Calfornia. We who live in west Hollywood have been lucky to escape the damage but malibu -only 20 minutes away has been hit badly-my friend Sara phoned to say the house next to her on the beach had been burnt to the ground and that she was not sure the portrait I had just done of her had survived the fire.Philip and i naively decided to go for a walk in Santa monica and Venice beach on monday believing the worst of the fires were over . the place was eerily empty and quiet with a huge yellow grey cloud blocking out the sun.we walked about 3 miles in this stiffling heat..Phil and I were blissfully unaware of the healthwarnings about the air quality the blanket effect the fires would have on the enviroment. I felt decidedly worse for ware after the walk -short of breath . we got home to find the fires had spread to Orange county and San Diego and that people were being evacuated.When I got up the next day I found a thin layer of ash on our car. never without a drama.
So this week we have been anticipating a writers strike here in Hollywood- its all the talk.. the producers are not paying the writers enough for things that are being downloaded. They threatened to do away with residuals and are being very hardfaced about the whole business. The last time there was a writers strike was in 1989-it lasted 22 weeks and many lost their homes . so it is bad news for us . Initially there is a ballot amongst the writers to see who wants to strike - Ironically most writers here are wating tables as only 10 % actually earn a living from it- so therefore 90% of the voters will not suffer the consequences of striking.Even though it will be uncomfortable for us we believe it is the right thing to do. Anyway the onus is on me to try and make some dosh which is quite hard work. I have to be very thick skinned as people seem gripped by enthusiasm and then we never hear another word. It is important to take out "flake Insurance " here as people with the best will in the world can often not follow through. So I keep trying and develope spiritual resilience.
wow , this must be a record amount of neglect for the old blog .. no I am not dead . We have had a series of mini dramas to deal with over the last few week and I just have not had that spare 20 minutes or so to devote to writing the blog--although my attentions have sometimes strayed to the highly addictive "facebook" which i joined by accident and now cannot leave alone. I name Mad who invited me to join in the first place as the pusher of an a class drug. Anyway must get my mind off the dreaded FB . Illness has been with us , a terible cough /fever bug kept the baby esther up every night , after 8 nights I was seeing double and having minor hallucinations. To top it all off I noticed a giant lice crawing across graces forehead alerting me to the grim reality that Nits were in town.I deloused the whole family with the strong pesticide found at the pharmacy. the nits did not respond, then I was told about hair Fairies - a hair salon devoted to the eradiction of nits. For a mere $75 you can have a consoltation and diagnosis, after that you pay to have your nite removed by the hour and if the nits are severe it may take 4 sessions. My friend Shelly spent $1400 dollars there in one week . I was content to buy their products and delouse myself.