Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Meeting Molly -- Part 1: Getting There

I got to meet Molly last night. Molly of Orangette and A Homemade Life and Delancy. Molly, to whom I am eternally grateful and by whom I am continually inspired.
I promise I didn't gush this much when I met her.
But I wanted to.

Before I actually met her though, I had to get there. To LA. A mere 30 minute drive, said Google maps.
First, I was caught up in a road rage encounter. That was fun. I called 911 cause the car in front of me was slowing down to 30 miles an hour, on the freeway!!!, swerving into the car next to him and they both had their windows rolled down so they could yell at each other.
Nothing like that kind of fun to get my drive started off right.

Then, in the heart of LA, where the 5 turns into 2 lanes and merges with the 101, I sat for a while. I began to feel a little road rage myself because I just knew I would be late and miss it all. I started to sweat.
When I finally made it off the freeway and headed up Vermont to Skylight Books, I found myself searching for a place to park.
More stress. More sweat. Great. I was going to meet Molly with sweat rings under my arms.

It was a cool neighborhood. A part of Los Feliz I've never been to. A mix of cool, funky, seedy, alternative and hipster. With no parking. I finally found a makeshift lot, paid, and ran to the bookstore.

I made it.
She was just being introduced.
There were no seats left, so I stood.
It was worth the traffic and the sweat. I'm so glad I went.

I'll tell you all about it next.
But first, the realization I had when I walked to my car after the evening was over.

I feel like I live in the city. I feel like I am a city girl.
Compared to where I came from, I do live in the city.
But compared to where I was last night, I am just a suburban housewife.

It made me laugh, as I sat in my minivan, full of empty car seats and cracker crumbs.
I am used to wide freeways, parking lots, and drive through Starbucks.
I am not used to book signings, sitting in traffic and streets filled with the funky, seedy, hipster vibe. (although I do visit 4th street in Long Beach on a regular basis and it is one of my favorite places. It is not, however, where I live.)

I could chafe against that and say, "I am not a soccer mom." in the voice from the Elephant Man. But why fight it? I have 3 kids, I drive a mini van, I think drive through coffee shops are an amazing invention. (one I despised before I had kids) Besides, I like being a mom. I have planned on being one my whole life. It is just that sometimes I do get a little lost in it all.

The trick I think, is to still have a little of that other Greta still in me. The one who isn't afraid to drive somewhere new, in LA, at night, by myself. The one who says, "I'm going to a book talk tonight." The one who said, "honey, let's take 25 teenagers overseas for the summer." The one who likes an adventure.

I have to keep that other Greta in me because this suburban housewife, this minivan mama, wants to teach her kiddos to seize the day, to follow their bliss and to go find an adventure.
It was just a little book signing, but for me, it was much, much more.

Stay tuned for the book talk, signing and how I make a complete dork out of myself.


Jennifer said...

you are too cute. i tell you, i am feeling quite similar... except that we are MOVING to that cool, funky, seedy, alternative, hipster CITY. although not los feliz... but the abbot kinney/venice vibe is quite similar, with a mix of bohemian hippie... which i love. it will definitely be a new adventure for me. i am actually really excited to re-invent myself a bit! :)

Lillian said...

Greta, for me, just driving to Los Feliz, at night by myself, parking, and walking to the bookstore, by myself....that is a big scary adventure!! I am so glad you don't take afer me, your mother!
After you called the other night on your way home from the book signing, I made this comment to your dad, "Greta is fearless".You have done so many things I never dreamed of doing. You, for sure ,take after your father. You are one of my heros Greta, I love you!!!

Erin McDonald said...

Way to go! I am so glad you still get out there and enjoy a little adventure once in a while! It's not taht you are getting a taste of who you were but it's who you are now! I love that about you!