On the 3rd March we celebrated being in the US for 2 years ( our only travel has been to Mexico during this time due to visa issues). Much has happened in that 2 years and it has gone so quickly. P and I got married on July 1st 2006- It was a classy affair - It happened in Vegas and the ceremony was conducted by ELVIS. There were other "themed" weddings available such as 007 James Bond wedding, A LOrd of the Rings Wedding , Fantam of the Opera and my personal fave -the Austin Powers wedding .P and I chose the "driving into the church in a pink cadillac convertible into a sea of dry ice " option-we wanted to give our guests the "wow" factor..all 30 of them.As you walked into the Elvis chapel there was a sign saying "Forgotten something?" "Rings $7 each"This was a real "class joint " Philip had Craig as his best man but I was unaware that I needed a matron of honour (someone to hold my miniature bouquet) So I chose my fiend Marj as she walked into the chapel. The ceremony consisted of us dancing to a few Elvis numbers and mumbling a few lines -It felt rather post modern as our three children (all dressed in white) looked on. The whole thing lasted 15 minutes..It was filmed digitally and sent into cyber space so our friends in GB could watch live on the internet.When I threw the bouquet at the end, one guest, who was married I might add was so determinded to catch it that she ran into six lane highway and nearly got herself killed. Two days later the whole event was immortalised on American TV as it was the subject of Craigs monologue on the Show.
Today Esther who is 3 started jabbering in spanish-I did not understand and asked her what she meant but she did not know how to translate- she is completely bilingual and will lapse into spanish when angry. Her and I talk "Spanglish" alot of the time and I have learnt to make myself understood since living here. There is an enormous Hispanic Subculture here in Los Angeles. Our beloved Aricelly - Esthers Nanny is from Guatamala and gathers regulaly with the other nannies and domestics at La Cienega Park where they all hang out. They are the hardest working people I have ever come across and they really earn their place in America. Every one knows the Californian economy would fall to pieces without the Latino population for cheap labour etc. They will go to any lenghts to get here , most common is SWIMMMING ! What they leave behind is a tough life in Central America. Aricellies best friend Anna looks after Lilly who is Esthers best friend. Anna is about 42 years old she has 3 grand children and a son. Yesterda y a distraught Aricelly came in to say that Annas only son had been shot dead in El Salvador over money. He was 26 years old and had been ordered to give $15000 to the "delinguants". He could not deliver - they stabbed him and he went into Hospital ..they waited until he came out and shot him that day. Anna has been warned not to return to El Salvador for the funeral as she will be in danger. She is devastated. She could not tell her boss, she has little English , so I ended up telling the boss myself today and offering whatever help we could. I realised that we are only 3 hrs from where all this begins - life is cheap there and these people have known true hardship.
Today we were invited to return to a crime scene where I had committed a holly wood faux pas some 18 months ago. P , I and the children were invited to an actresses Birthday Party in studio city. her husband is a collegue and friend of Ps and they have children the same age as ours . the party was very down-to-earth by LA standards and no showy ostentation or needless glitze, and I (new to LA ) felt relaxed surrounded by other families. I ended up talking to a women who like me had several ginger kids and a ginger husband who was also a writer.Having bonded over our common ginger gene I asked her what she did for a living and if like her husband she wrote..the atmoshere instantly changed and became frosty and hope for my new found ginger commerade went out of the window, I went into the garden and confided in P that I was having difficulty making friends and smarting from the sudden scorn of said woman. He told me that the woman in question was an Oscar winning actress who had also been in a sitcom here for many years. I do not watch TV and i instantly forget actors but here it appears they are Gods and to be noted come what may!!! The irony of the tale is that today we were invited for Brunch to the same couple who had also invited "Ginger couple". I told our hosts that I had offended the Oscar winner and that I may not be a welcome guest."offended-not in the least- they liked you and wanted to meet you again, thats why we asked you and them together!"
Two Birthdays within four days and I need pschycic resussetation- i am burnt out through planning , present buying and dealing with "well he got...she got...situation" This week in Feb is a fertile breeding pit of resentment and hysteria..I decided to make Esters party a very low key event -5 or 6 children and good old fashioned Tea and Party games -pass the parcel , musical bumps.needless to say there was a beed eyed "MOm" watching over my son 7 who was beating all the babies at the party games-"Hes chEATING" SHE ACCUSED' so Gabriel was sent off and melodrama ensued.. when half past five arrived I breathed a sigh of releif- all had gone well without major incident but at 6 oclock 2 Moms decided to arrive fashionable late- half an hour after the party had offically ended.