Posted by: scrabblequeen | October 5, 2011

A Visit To Santa Monica

If you’ve been hanging around here for a while, you know that I make occasional trips down to L.A., specifically to Santa Monica. I did so this past weekend, but this trip was a little different.
Why do I go there in the first place? Is it because it is a lovely beach community with great shopping and a fun “boardwalk” kind of pier? Not really. Is it because I enjoy driving 7 hours in a car only to end up in L.A. traffic? Definatley not! So why?…

I’ve been visiting Santa Monica to visit with my step-mother, who is now 89yrs old, and who suffered a stroke this past February. This was different because…it is likely the last one. The daughter who lives down there and does the care-taking of Jean let us all (the family) know that Jean is slipping away and that we should all make every effort to visit as soon as possible.

This trip was also different because I drove down with Jackie, Jean’s sister, who lives not too far from here.

Jackie, Jean, and me

We spent some time with Jean both Saturday and Sunday before starting the long drive home through the Valley. It was bittersweet because Jean was only sometimes aware of who we were and often lapsed into periods of nothing but fantasy. However, she was happy to be out and about with us, whoever we were. 🙂

Other than taking Jean down to the Third Street Promenade, we really didn’t go out much the whole weekend. One exception was that stopped at a place Jackie knew of on our way back to the hotel on Saturday. Very interesting!

The Tile House sits in an ordinary neighborhood. YOu don’t see anything unusual until you quite literally on top of the place. Then….wow. What is that?!

A section of the fence

Isn’t this crazy? Each section of the fence was made of something different. Golf clubs, flatware, tools,….you name it. Obviously if you follow the link you’ll see more and better photos of this rather unique property.

Don’t feel too sad for me. Jean has lived a long and full life. I know she doesn’t wish to linger on until there is nothing left of what she considers the good or important things in her life. I had not intended to make this journey, but in some ways, am very glad that I did. If I hadn’t, I wouldn’t have gotten the chance to know Jackie much better than I had before. I would have never known about the Tile House. And I wouldn’t have slipped in a short visit to another friend who lives very near Jean. In the final conideration, I must conclude it was a good thing.


  1. That fence is the COOLEST thing I have EVER seen – i totally want one in my backyard one day! 🙂

  2. Those are good trips to take for sure!

  3. Lovely. Beautiful. I got to spend some special time yesterday with extended family, because an 88 yr. old cousin of sorts slipped away in her sleep Friday… She was ready to go too. I’m glad you had the time with all of the special women you saw!

  4. I’m glad you are glad you went!

  5. I understand exactly what you are talking about. I’m watching my Mom get a teensy bit frailer every day. So far, she’s pretty good for an almost 97 year old woman, but she’s so fragile. It’s not a tragedy; she is very old, but it still is very sad.
    Still, we are so lucky to still have these ladies in our lives.

  6. It’s lovely that you got to see her again and get her out and about in the sun, even if she did slip off on you. It sounds like she’s almost comfortably (if you know what I mean) coming to the end of her road and is ready for the next adventure. I wish her all the best on that journey.

  7. Oh, now ..that fence is cool! I’ll check out the link later. I’m glad you feel good about having made the trip!

  8. I’m very glad you went, and that you got to spend that time together.

  9. It is so bittersweet to spend time with a dear relative who’s about to depart. I think it teaches us a lot though, how to savor each moment. And ultimately it’s not goodbye, it’s ‘see you later’. Glad you had some bright moments on your trip.

  10. So glad you went to see her before she moves on……..sweet image of you all.

    (in response to a comment on acrylic on my blog, have you tried Berrocco is soooooo soft. I bet you’d love it.

  11. much better to have made the trip, no matter how bittersweet than to regret not having gone. I’m glad your visit was lovely. g

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