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Archive for the ‘new found glory’ Category

Tiger Lilies in the kitchen

At last! Its happened. After numerous trips to Los Angeles we knew wanted to call it home. In August, on our last day here after a 2 week visit, I found it. The perfect house. 4 bedrooms, 4 bathrooms, huge kitchen, 2 fireplaces, and more storage space than one could possibly imagine. Even an “extra’ garage out back just waiting to be converted into a pool house, guest house or work studio. Enclosed landscaped backyard so we could even let Gordie out the back french doors without being on a leash. Something we could never do in CT.

Simply lovely. Wonderful little neighborhood called Cheviot Hills. Flanked by Fox Studios on one end & Sony Pictures on the other. Nestled between Beverly Hills, Century City, Westwood & Culver City as our borders. Quiet, private, kind of like Wilton back in CT, yet about 15 mins to anywhere. Perfect.

After a whirlwind of packing and closing up the CT house Lauren, myself & Gordie hit the road on Sept 23rd for our trip across country. This is a journey I never want to make again, or at least I wont take 1-40 for over 80% of the drive. What a nightmare. Though we did think New Mexico was absolutely beautiful. Georgia O’Keeffe & Ansel Adams were certainly on to something. Its stunning stark landscapes will haunt you.

I will say that Winslow, Arizona was a complete bust. So much for the Eagles immortal song. Pfft. Nothing but fast food and heat. Landed in the city of angels on Sept 28th. Parked ourselves at the Residence Inn in Beverly Hills and awaited the arrival of all our worldly possessions. Gordie took to the city & the new house like a duck to water. We were amazed! The van arrived on Oct 2nd, and by the 4th we were in the house.  After a few trips to Ikea in Burbank we were all set. I don’t think we’ve stopped going since.

I had no idea that Lauren &  I would fall so deeply completely in love with the city. Going to see a show, Katy Perry at the Staples center, Sia, Ellie Goulding, at the Wiltern, Howard Jones at the Music Box, and numerous others is no longer a 2 hour ordeal. While we lived exactly 50 miles from mid-town Manhattan, getting in & out of New York City always takes longer than one expects. Since I have now been on & mastered every single freeway, discovered shortcuts & back roads, LA is, relatively, a piece of cake. Though as in any major city, it does have its moments. We have discovered the great Los Angeles secret, hardly anyone is out & about on the weekends! Virtually little to zero traffic. I think Sunday may be my favourite day to explore and be out and about.

Have had incredible meals at Spago, Hatfields, Mozza, Matsuhisa, Nobu, Jar, Natalee Thai, A-Frame, to name just a few & found some really great little spots. Robata-ya on Sawtelle ( bows to mako-san the chef), The Six on Pico, Royal T on Washington Blvd in Culver City, Pici Enoteca on S. Beverly, The Nosh in Beverly Hills, our local diner hangout (waves to Linda our fav waitress). Grub in Hollywood. Discovering the Kogi food truck parked on Olympic in front of the Goodwill in West La. The Misfit & Border Grill in Santa Monica. So so many others I have decided to start a blog devoted to my culinary adventures as I learn all the city has to offer. Details on that later.

Meeting a slew of the cities best chefs, farmers & purveyors at local farmers markets. My favourite being the Sunday Beverly Hills Farmers Market, where I have on occasion rubbed elbows with Wolfgang Puck. Made friends with the Smokin’ Mamas, 2 really cool ladies who have some great artisanal foods. I have been collecting their gourmet handcrafted salts every week. Their home cure jerkys are stellar. http://www.smokinmamas.com Not to mention the very good-looking mushroom guy, flower vendors, farm fresh eggs, herbs, all manner of produce, and the freshest fish in all of LA. I get inspired to create a fantastic sunday supper & fill my house with stunning bouquets of color popping blooms.

Been scouting sites for my own space. Cafe/ Patisserire/ Boulanger/ cool little hangout, serving what I love to cook and my friends love to eat. This will keep me occupied for the “winter” and I should have something in the works by spring. Stay tuned.

So its safe to say we aren’t going anywhere for quite a while. Maybe a quick trip  to San Fran or Hawaii or even Sydney, but this is home base central for now. New York will always be there and if I get the urge to see snow, or ski, Mammoth and Tahoe are a short distance away.

For now I’m content to get up, see the sun shining, make my cuppa tea and take it out to my back garden and revel in another day in LA and see what surprises are waiting for me, some maybe even just around the corner.

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California Girls .. Part 2

Deciding that the end of January was a good time to escape the cold snowy frozen tundra that has become CT & NYC this winter..I booked tickets on Virgin America for the warm sunny environs of LA.  Since we’d had such a fantastic time in November, I wanted to be sure that moving (no pun intended) was the right move to make. It is. It will be. It can’t happen soon enough!

My usual limo driver Tony picked us up in the dark cold early morning light and we were at JFK in the blink of an eye. With a major snow storm approaching the east coast the airport was insane!  I got in trouble w/ TSA for taking an iPhone pic of the line of people at 6am. They were not amused. I was. Hahah. Lesson learned = keep the iPhone off. Flight was packed, but since I always buy an extra seat, lovey & I had plenty of space. First class on VA sells out very quickly!

Ipod on and b4 I knew it, we were at LAX. 78 degrees! It was -7 when we left NYC.  Same drill as last time, got picked up in a 2011 black bmw. Picked up my dusty blue mini cooper convertible. It had only 250 miles on it. Sweet! Put the top down and hit the 405. God I love LA!! The Mosaic has to be one of the best kept secrets in all of Beverly Hills. Quiet. Discreet. Private. Uber-Elegant. With a staff to die for. We were home. 🙂  “Natalie.. at the front desk.. I love u!”

Zipped off to Whole Foods for waters & snacks and then down to Santa Monica to watch the sun set on the beach and have an impromptu picnic. Stunning. Back at the Mosaic, some parmesan truffle fries and watched  the Social Network. Asleep by 10.

Up early. Refreshed. Ready to take in all LA has to offer. Quick cuppa tea poolside and we hit the streets. Top down, Katy Perry playing we headed 4 Hollywood.  The Sanrio store was calling our names. The Rite was having a premiere that eve, so most of Graumans was blocked off. Love loved the “Black” Carpet.  Quite fitting. On to Amoeba Music. OMG what a store. The Industrial & Goth section had me swooning. 24 cds later lovey dragged me out of there. Zipped off 2 the Farm for Lobster Clubs and back 2 the hotel to get ready 4 Iron & Wine at the Wiltern. Laura Marling open and she blew me away. Concerts in LA are nothing like shows in NYC.  It was a “perfect” day.

Breakfast at John O’ Groats on Pico. Then wandered around the Century City Westfield Mall. I truly think I have died and gone to heaven w/ Karen Millen London & Betsy Johnson.  Late afternoon cocktail ( no booze 4 me)  and off 2 shop Melrose.  Dinner at Matsuhia. What a disappointment. $250 later. Meh. Nobu needs to spend more time at his ressies. This was prolly the one and only time I got attitude. And I gave it back in spades. Needless to say.. I won. 🙂

Watched Yes’Man in the room on DVD. Loved it. Breakfast at the Nosh. Once again so entertaining! 3 gentleman behind me talking about their wives.  Man #1..She makes me crazy, I’d pull my hair out if I had any. OMG! Man #2 I just pay the bills and ignore her. Man #3 Thank god I have a mistress.  I almost burst out laughing. Priceless. Who knew? I’ve never been married (nor want to be).

Went to The Grove. More shopping. Then Craig Ferguson Show at CBS. Met the Logans. A  truly lovely couple. I bagged the one and only late show t-shirt the warm up comedian throws out. Chucky “lobbed” it  directly at me. Sweet!  Score. Landed right in my lap.  The guest was Jim Parsons from the Big Bang Theory. A show I have been told I remind people of .. Sheldon’s character. In smarts, not looks. I’m kind of snarky in an over the top intelligent kind of way.  LOL.

Had dinner at Mako! OMG> This has to be the best ressie on S. Beverly. Fantastic meal.  Next day had lunch at Spago. Sherry Yard came & spent 20 mins talking 2 me. Signed menus. Cookie box to take with. Can I say I was over the top. We also packed in a trip to the Museum of Death. Hollywood Forever Cemetery. Griffith Park. Lacama. Amazing sandwiches from the food truck “Phamish”. YUM -O! Discovering Whimsic Alley on Wilshire, devoted to all things Harry Potter. TeaForte at the hotels “Hush” restaurant.

Holy shit.. drove down to the Shriners to see them setting up for the SAGS.  Shopped the new Santa Monica PLace Kitson 4 a $500 Marc Jacobs bag. Dinner at Hatfields. Meh.  Dinner at Mako again= YES!  Invited to Mako-sans other ressie.. Robata-Ya. 5**** treatment. Was perfection. In West LA.  I will sosoososs be a regular when I move.

Long story  short, I have not felt so “at home” in a long long time. I could go on.. The amazing dude at LaBrea Bakery ( wanted to touch my hair)  the Getty Center, Grammy Museum. And so much more.

I look forward to exploring all this amazing city has to offer. Warm. Sun. Sand. Surf. Smiling happy people. It will be a discovery. New doors waiting to be opened. New friends to be made. The riches and glory that is LA. I and my lovey can’t wait.

I can already feel the sun on my face and the warmth on my skin.  As I shed the east coast and move on. Heres to our next chapter.

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California Girls

What a perfect vacation we had. From the moment the limousine driver arrived at my house (early even!) to take us to JFK , I had a good feeling about this trip. He got us to the airport in under an hour.  If anyone in the CT / NYC metro area needs a limousine company I highly recommend Colonial. They were fantastic coming and going! Ask for Tony. 🙂

Upon arrival at JFK , we were flying Virgin America, I was greeted with one of the many “hello beautiful” I was to hear during our 2 weeks away. If that’s not a guaranteed spirit lifter, I don’t know what is. Check in was the usual cattle drive that airport security has become. My advice, wear clothes and shoes that slip on and off easily. Leave the belts and heavy jewelry for when you get there. Have laptops packed so they are easily accessible. Dont bother taking any 3oz bottles of liquids. Most of the people who got held up was because they had either packed them wrong or were trying to take a larger bottle with a smaller amount in it. Why bother? You can always pick something up at the hotel of your destination. That said it will help to make your travel experience a lot nicer.

Met a woman from Brazil killing time at our gate taking iphone pictures of herself. She was lovely. Had a nice chat and the time passed by quickly. Landed at LAX before I knew it. My fears of flying were completely banished. Had nary a panic attack nor heart palpitation. Never once looked for my Xanax. LOL. The rental car company had sent a driver to pick us up, Louis and he was wonderful. Funny too. Even let me take his picture upon which he suggested he hold up the sign with my name.  Adorable. I tipped him $20.  Got the black cooper mini convertible as requested, loaded in our luggage set up the GPS ( the one & only time I used it) and we were off on the 405.

I maneuvered my way on the freeway and all around LA like I’d lived there for years. The Thompson Beverly Hills is a gorgeous hotel. The only problem is all the rooms have little outside balconies. The sliding glass doors do little to dim the sound of traffic on Wilshire. That and the roof top bar & pool don’t help either. So if you’re looking for a quiet room (always) this not the hotel for you. The bathrooms I must say were a revelation in themselves. But you dont sleep in the bathroom.  Though the food in the restaurant Bond St. was simply delicious and the best sushi we had in LA was there. It is well worth the price.  Parked the car and walked around Beverly Hills. La was smiling already, but she just looked at me and said ‘I love it here”. So did I.  We discovered a little neighbourhood on Charlieville Street.  The houses were perfect. Not to big. Not to small. Whole foods/ BH post office/ Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf and numerous other shops all within walking distance.  Yup, it felt like home.

After a restless night trying sleep, we left and went to The Mosaic Hotel. This was my original choice of hotel, and after a quick trip there it was obvious it was much more my style. Lush, elegant, private & quiet. The hotel has its own little ” garage” and you park yourself. Means you can come & go as you please without waiting (or having to tip) valets to retrieve or take away your car. Our room was on the top floor, which only has 3 by the way, looking down into the courtyard & pool below. Stunning.  Had a true Beverly Hills “moment” one day coming back from shopping and the beach and in the garage was an enormous SVU and exiting it were 2 women. One had obviously just returned from having plastic surgery. She had on a hat, huge sunglasses and her face was swathed in bandages. They nodded and trotted off up the stairs to one of the outside pool / cabana suites. I almost asked the front desk if she was somebody famous or just a rich Beverly Hills housewife there to recuperate in private for a few days. I refrained. Haha.

The concerts were great. The Avalon where we saw A Perfect Circle is a wonderful funky place. Met a really nice couple whom gave me all sorts of foodie advice (for good mexican) turns out he is the drummer for a band called “DayZero” and they have opened for Puddle of Mudd and have relatives in Brewster, NY. Small world. But by far the best show was Stars at the Wiltern. What a gorgeous venue built in 1931! Very very art deco. They were simply fantastic. Played for 2 1/2 hours and really gave it their all.  Watched the sunset at the Santa Monica pier.  Munched parmesan truffled french fries at the Mosaic’s bar  in the lobby while candlelight flickered poolside. Shopped endlessly. Had a great breakfast at The Farm of Beverly Hills. At lunch at the Nosh listened in on a power deal at the next table.  Went to the La Brea Tar Pits. Drove down Melrose & Sunset Blvds. Walked the Hollywood walk of fame. Saw a movie being filmed  downtown. Had an incredible dinner at the Urth Cafe. Found a gem of a french cafe Champange on Charlieville Street. Slept. Slept. And ultimately did not want to leave. Ever. We decided to return as soon as we could.

Next stop San Francisco. Got to LAX and the flight to SF was delayed. Only by an hour so not so bad. Got into the city with ease and there our woes began. Now we have been here many times and always enjoyed ourselves. Walking into the lobby of the Hotel Abri, I thought score! This is spectacular. The buck stopped there. This used to be the Monticello and was a Kimpton property. No longer. The suite they gave  me was across the hall from the elevator bay. I had specifically asked for a quiet, inside room. Upon entering it was obvious that the renovations had been half assed. It was sort of like a bad imitation of Mad Men. The DVD player was in the bedroom. Where the only place to sit was on  the King sized bed. One would think that should have been in the living room where the couch and arm-chair were. Wrong.  The desk was directly under the flat screen TV so if someone was sitting there you would be blocking the view of the one trying to watch TV. The selection was pathetic. The whole suite smelled. Like bad food. The window air-conditioners were loud, ugly and if you wanted to close the curtains, you would then render the AC useless. It was humid and stuffy. One would think with a major renovation they would have installed a central system. Tacky. I was not amused. Not at $300 a night. Before SF taxes. I complained. They offered a smaller room, no deal.

Lovey & I took a walk up the street to a Kimpton property, the Sir Francis Drake. Gentile stately old hotel. They showed me a suite. I booked it for the next day. This was before I saw the “creature”. Back at the Abri  we went to the hotels restaurant Puccini & Punetti and had dinner. Not stellar, just okay.  Back in our room we watched a movie and  went to bed early. Got up in the middle of the night and saw a bug on the floor of the bathroom. Not one either. A little family. Of cockroaches. Lovey told me she had seen them to. Totally skeezed out I took a picture of the little bugger on the wall with my iPhone. Called the front desk to inform them we would be checking out. Then I showed them why. The hotels general manager seemed non plussed, shrugged and still had the balls to present me with a full nights bill. I looked at him in shock. He offered to take off half. I have since  written to The Larkspur Corporations headquarters, detailed my entire stay and included photos of the house guest. Since the GM merely stated he would have to call his exterminator, I can only assume they were / are aware of this problem. In a flea bag cheap hotel maybe. For $350 plus change a night, not acceptable. No way.

Sort of set the tone for our stay in SF. I found people to be rude, snotty even. Unlike LA where everyone was nice. Everyone! The Sir Francis Drake was, a meh. Also expensive another $300 plus a night, but old and dated. At least the rooms were huge. Lots of space. The production of Coraline was an experience I’ll not  soon forget. My heart breaks for Neil Gaiman. They spelt his name Neal on the playbill. Now while  the homeless population of San Francisco has always been a problem, it seems to have tripled since my last visit.  They are everywhere. So is the mess they create. The city was filthy. The few really nice people we met were from out-of-town. LOL.  Not all was lost. There were some good moments. The Birthday Massacre were of course excellent. Slim’s was not. Best experience was the Onigilly  Truck on Ferry Plaza. Little Japanese street food snack. Yum. Amobea records in the haight where I scored a veritable cache of music. Lunch at Chez Panisse and breakfast at Dottie’s True Blue Cafe were outstanding.

We wished we had stayed in LA. Though the main purpose of the trip was to have a good time, it was also to see the 2 cities side by side and see if we thought we could live in either one. LA won hands down. By a landslide. While we love the east coast, we think its time for a change. I know I wrote that we were staying firmly planted here. Well upon reflection we need a new vista. Different view. Sunny horizon. I lived in California as a girl. Its time to go back. New York wont be going anywhere any time soon, and if and when I’m ready to return, I will. Not now. Walking the theatre district reminds me of my parents and the countless on & off broadway plays they saw. Restaurants we ate at. Shopping. Etc. My parents adored New York. I do to. For now though I want to feel the warmth of the sun on my skin. Watch the sun setting into the ocean. Drive the pacific coast highway with the top down. Buy a hot pink Christmas tree next year. Wander Melrose and Robertson and Wilshire Blvd. Have a killer sandwich at Nancy Silverton’s La Brea Bakery. Hit the street food trucks. Just bask in the glow of the California sunshine and the smile on my daughters face. Its time. Build new  memories. Happy memories. Me & La, and of course the little man. Gordie comes too. We couldn’t do this with out him.

Peace Out & Stay Tuned,

Victoria

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What a year I  have had.   Now, here I am about to start a new chapter. New life = new beginnings. I cannot yet bring myself to blog about my father’s death after such a long illness it was a relief/ blessing and sorrow. He was my rainbow. Daughters form  a certain bond with their fathers. My mother, whilst an amazing woman also.. had so many cancers it was always a given. Poppie was  my world and focus for the past 4 years. But as is my wont, I digress.

I am about to embark on a new adventure, lovey firmly in tow. I think we shall be joined at the hip forever. Sort of like that Grey Gardens/ Drew Barrymore/ Jessica Lange movie only  we are way way cooler. We are going on our first vacation since I quit my job in New York City in 2006. Our last trip was to San Francisco. We are headed there yet again. The city holds magical healing powers for me. I need them now desperately. I am also throwing Los Angeles into the mix, because I can!  Strictly for fun.

This trip was originally going to be a “look-see”.  As in do we want to move west. Well I am a born New Yorker. So this is going to be a no-brainer. We are staying east coasters. Its closer to family and friends across the pond. My lovely sister will be moving to England next year. So we can swap. LOL. Though she may need to brush up on her house-keeping skills.

We leave 2morrow. Los Angeles first. Staying in Beverly Hills. The Thompson. Rented a mini cooper convertible. Going to see A Perfect Circle at the Avalon. Craig Ferguson show ( Juliette Lewis is the guest). Stars ( the band)  at the Wiltern. V.I P. pass for that one. Of course I really hope to meet @ducks2007 and a few other Blip & Twitter buddies.  But I realize life has its own way of doing things. So if certain things don’t come to pass, well now was not the time and it will come around again. The circle of life is ongoing.

Then flying to San Francisco. The city of my dreams. I love it. Have decided though that in years to come I shall retire there. Build a B & B. Up north. Close to the Point Reyes area. For now I will remain firmly entrenched in New York City. Though whilst in San Francisco we are also going to enjoy ourselves. Double double executive suite at the Abri Hotel in Union Square.  Going to see the opening of Neil Gaimans “Coraline” at the San Francisco playhouse. The Birthday Massacre at Slim’s. And my very first tattoo at Mom’s. Not to mention eating ( something I need to engage in more often). Sleeping. Hanging with Great Great friends.

My health has never been better. Heart definitely racing the past few days. Forgot to wear my  nitro ” patch’ and just the general excitement over going somewhere. Still don’t drink. I passed over a year. Pats self on the back.

Really, I  am  just glad to get through each day. Have been forgiving all those whom have harmed/ hurted/ been mean to me. Makes me a better person ( imho).. LOL.

Need to finish the cookbook. Sell CT house. Time to move on… New beginnings indeed. Love to all whom have been beside me during these years. I can never repay you.

Peace Out,

Victoria

ps.. food posts & supernatural to resume asap!!

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The back story ~ to put my previous blog into perspective I need to take a few steps back, before I take a few steps forward and continue with the tale.

It all started with a heart attack. Mine. Yup, me. Way to young to have one you say, no. They can strike at any age, and there are many different types.  Mine was a Syndrome X. Otherwise what is known as a “silent heart attack”. Everything looks normal, only it’s not. The cause? High blood pressure. Something very few people check as often as they should.

Symptoms? Nothing you would think twice about. Chest pain, fatigue, feeling of general malaise, weakness, loss of appetite. Basically, how I felt every day. Dec 1st, 2008. 7:01 pm. Had been feeling really bad all day, it kept increasing, until I felt a massive crushing weight on my chest. I thought I was just having a panic attack. Wait until the morning,  you’ll feel better. Yeah right. I would most likely have been dead by then. Sayonara, see ya later bye.

I called 911. The policeman on duty talked to me for a few minutes and told me to calm down. He was being polite. The ambulance was at my house in less than 11 minutes. The medic took my blood pressure and said ‘oh my god”. My BP was 248/199. Fuck me. Your heart  simply cannot pump at that rate for very long with out massive damage, or just giving out. I was on an express elevator to hell, going down.

Tick, tock, boom. Onto the stretcher, into the ambulance. Everything was a blur. It was pouring outside. Major deluge. I thought, nice, I like the rain. Lying on the gurney, they hooked me up to an IV drip, stuck a nitro glycerin tab under my tongue, removed my shirt, the better to”jump” start my heart if need be. I felt very detached from my surroundings. Stared at the ceiling. Focused on a teeny tiny bug. Inching its way across the top, oblivious to the drama unfolding below. Talk about out-of-body experiences, I did not have any major life altering thoughts, except two, I wished I had been able to kiss my daughter good-bye, and did I have my iPod with me.

We were at the hospital in no time. I now have great respect for EMT’s and drivers who get the fuck out-of-the-way when an ambulance is barreling down the road. Could be you in there. When every moment counts. They had my “room” ready. Section of the ER for really bad cases. Dr.s every where. More IV’s, more meds, hooked up to life support. Blood pressure cuff put on, and it stayed there for the next 24 hours. Numbers were now higher than before 260/ 210. Time to freak out. I vaguely remember what went on for the next 5-6 hours. Got a shot, to relax me, um, nope. More meds. More Dr.s. Where to put me, ICU? Or down the hall telemetry. BP started to fall. Finally.

200/120. They moved me. I needed to pee. Thanks intravenous lasix. To remove excess water around the heart. One of the first places it collects. Hey, new fact I never knew. I do now. And lots more. Long story long, by morning I was holding steady at about 180/90. Beautiful #’s. EKG showed no major damage. Ditto a myriad of tests. Head scratching ensued. Took numerous stress tests. Ultrasounds. Drank funky dye. On and on. Day 2. More of the same. No change. Day 3. Okay, now I’m 160/80. I want to go home now please. I’d really like to go home now.

And I did. They couldn’t keep me, and they couldnt tell me exactly what happened. That took months. Almost a year. The verdict? Stress. Taking care of my parents, quitting my job and having the weight of the world thrown in my lap all took its toll. My BP stayed high for a year. Was put on an ungodly amount of metoprolol. 300 milligrams daily. I was always tired. Because its function is to slow your heart rate down, and I was still running the Tokyo Bullet in my chest. My BP never went below 160/80. Ever. Bummer. No flying. No mosh pits. No stress. Dont get to excited. Yeah, right. Like when my  Dad would fall out of bed @4am and I be calling 911. Oh Hi Victoria, how are you? I’m fine officer, its pops. 8 times in one year. ER trips. Hospitals. Mummy sick, her surgeries. Quit my job. No wonder I was stressed. Ya think?

Flash forward to Sept, 25th 2009. Routine Dr. check-up. BP 185/ 92. Crap. New Dr. though. We talked. For an hour. Gave me some freebies for a med called Lexapro, to calm me down. Okay, now I don’t do drugs any more, but I figured, why not? Try it. Maybe it will help. Got the evening bullshit done, took one and had a glass of Cabernet. Big mistake! Huge!  Within 20 minutes I was in the throes of a full-scale panic attack. I (by this time) owned my own BP cuff, since I had to take it once a week to monitor my numbers. Got the cuff, fuck. 210/99. Hour later 225/130. 2 hours later 240/160. Not again lord. This can’t be happening to me. Called the Dr. left a message. He called right back, first question, did you take the Lexapro? Yup. Second question, did I have anything to drink? Yup.

And therein was the problem. I always had a glass or two of red wine every night. No big really, except it was causing my heart rate to soar. In combo with the Lexapro ( which is a huge no-no by the way) well it was not cool. Dr. Yenz said can you chill until morning and come see me? I did. Still crazy high BP, but he took blood & ran some tests, something that no one ever did in hospital. Verdict, I was allergic to many chemicals & sulfites in the wine. Hell I was allergic to practically everything. Combined with my stressful existence= high BP. I was poisoning my own body, only I didn’t know it.

Sept 27th 2009. I quit drinking. Everything. Became Vegan. Gave up dairy, wheat, sugar, meat.  Nothing processed, nothing canned, nothing frozen, nothing out of a bag or a box. Brown rice, avocados and green tea became my best friends. Though as a french chef my eating habits were always quite excellent. 2 months later, BP 140/80. Feb 2010. BP 130/70. Meds reduced and removed. April 2010 BP 121/65. Pulse 69. Perfection. Metoprolol dropped to 25 milligrams once a day. Still no alcohol. Though Dr. Ynez says a glass of Cabernet or Merlot would be fine now. A glass. Maybe 2. Sweet. On the weekends. As treat. Not as a way to reduce my stress. I have learned breathing techniques and relaxation methods. How to avoid stress or situations that could be potentially “unpleasant. Or how not to let certain situations piss me off or get control of me. Only I control me.

Saw Dr. Yenz the other day. He was in awe. I look incredible. I look fantastic. I glow. Radiant. My body has changed completely. Now if I could just get my obsession with Blip under control I’d be perfect! LOL> And that my friends is the second half of this story. Which will be next. And then the circle will be complete.

Tick ~ Tock ~ Boom. No longer.

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Okay, so I have been remiss in my blogging. Actually that is an understatement. There were cobwebs on this page when I opened  it and I had to re-enter my pass code. Yikes! I have been writing reams of “stories”, just not finding the time nor the energy to sit down and put them into print. Lazy, no. Overwhelmed by life, yes. Oh, and a little thing called Twitter and now my newly discovered passion ~ Blip.fm.  To feed my ceaseless quest for music. New, old, punk, jazz…you name it, it’s there. Heaven. Only once you get going, it’s almost impossible to stop. Foisting ones musical taste on complete strangers. Only they respond! In kind! With props and comments and “re-blips”. Instant gratification to say the least. Loved and adored by the vast unknown. Intimacy without physical contact. So 2010. Stanley Kubrick never envisioned the future like this.

Back to my original train of thought ~ my blog. I have decided that if you don’t write at least ONCE a week it is very easy to say “I’ll do it tomorrow” and before you know it  ~ kazam a month has passed, or longer. Then it’s well, I need to write down some of my recipes, exercise, walk the dog, burn cd’s, oh Survivor’s on, did I just hear Mum & Dad, and so on and so- forth. Endless babble and dribble that we create to justify why we are not doing something. Yeah, right. Time to turn that off. Or at least hit the mute button in your brain.

This goes hand in hand with my new-found perspective, namely, I am hence-forth doing things for me. First. Daughter second. Everyone and everything else in between is up for grabs. I am not Atlas, and the world was getting a little heavy. So I have set it down, for now. How long it sits there remains to be seen. The realization that I do not control the universe has had amazing results. I look better. Shit, I look fantastic! People do a double take. More instant gratification. I smile more. And I have a great smile. I wink at good-looking strangers. I dance in the aisles of the supermarket ( well okay, if it’s Green Day). I spend money with out obsessing over it. If want it, and it’s there, okay. World is still turning on its axis (and I even set it down).

To that end I have even decided that “getting out” and living is very enjoyable. Tickets to the Tim Burton exhibit at MOMA in NYC, sure why not (april 9th by the way). Concert or 2  or 3 ~ ditto. The Ruse, HIM at Irving Plaza in NYC, with an overnight in Manhattan at the Muse ( room with a view & a balcony). Take that Helena Bonham Carter. I deserve it. So does my lovely. We are both looking forward to seeing Conan O’Brien’s comedy tour at Mohegan Sun in June. Hey, I might even play the slot machines. I have never gambled in my life. Maybe I’ll get lucky. If I don’t, so what.

So what’s my point? Don’t let your own bullshit hold you back. You have but one life and it is staring you right in the face. No ifs, ands, or butts. Just do it. Wasn’t that a Nike slogan? Well, it’s very apropos. Get your ass moving and do something. For yourself. Paint. Draw. Write a poem. Learn to fly a plane. Buy a pet snake. Meditate for 20 minutes. Turn off the cell phone. Get a tattoo. Take guitar lessons (next on my list!). Whatever it is that you dream about, yet always have (or find) an excuse for. There is no excuse, no boundaries. So open your mind to your imagination and the places that are awaiting your arrival. Real or fantasy. You can never be too late.

Peace out & stay tuned.

Vic

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