ON A PHOTO
TO ENLARGE IT:
At our wedding party
My new family in Boise, Idaho
In our garden with an amazing
Ray Romano with Doris Roberts
and Patricia Heaton
At the WIFTI Summit
closing night party
Jim and I decided to make our situation permanent and April 20th, 2005
is the date that the State of California assigned our official Domestic
Partnership. We have a wonderful scroll with a gold seal on it. We had
a celebration with thirty friends in May at a local Italian restaurant
(to find out more, see the WHAT'S NEW update
page) and went to Washington, D.C. on a mini-honeymoon.
It was a great trip and we managed, in just a few days, to visit
The Holocaust Museum, The Indian Museum, The Space Museum, The Vietnam
Memorial, Vietnam Nurses Memorial, The Korean War Memorial, World
War II Memorial and the Fine Arts Museum. My dear friends from NYC,
Laura Fieber and husband, Dennis Minogue joined us in D.C. and we
all stayed at The Tabard Inn, the oldest continuously operating
hotel in Washington. We also ate at some amazing restaurants...
The Tabard Inn
Jim and I in front of
California marker at the World
Memorial in Washington
Later in May, Jim arranged for us to visit his daughter Val and son-in-law
Dave in Boise, Idaho on the occasion of his grandson, Chris's
graduation from High School. Chris starts college in the fall and is
going to be a Vet. I'm already dreaming of him working one of the check-points
of the Iditarod in the distant future.
In May I started a six month job for Women In Film, as coordinator
of their upcoming International Summit. It was hard at first to get
back into a schedule of going into an office from 9 AM to 6 PM every
day, but I soon got used to it. It was a challenging job, very detail-oriented,
but we had a great committee and the months sped by.
We moved Jim's daughter Amanda in July to Denver in two cars,
with a cat in one and a bicycle on the back of the other. Jim gave
up his large apartment in our complex and took over Amanda's smaller
one, which now became his office as well as a guest apartment for
Finally, the WIFTI International Summit took place in Los
Angeles at the Park Hyatt Hotel in Century City. On Oct. 29, 30, 31
and Nov. 1. Four days of panels, screenings, networking, parties,
special events. It was well attended with women from the film and
TV industry worldwide. Laura and Peggy came out from NYC to attend
(we had been together at the Summit in New Zealand) and Laura became
the first person to use the "guest" apartment. The closing
night party featured the three women from Everybody Loves Raymond,
getting a "Women of Achievement Award" and Ray Romano came
and gave out the prizes. Immediately after the Summit, I produced
a panel for the American Film Market on behalf of WIF, as I had done
in previous years.
Seeing Old Delhi
by bicycle rickshaw
On the plane from Nepal to Bhutan
you could see Mt. Everest
Archery is Bhutan's national
Colorful altar in Bhutan
Prayer flags are everywhere!
To ensure fertility, penises are painted on the outside of houses. We
saw many variations.
Bhutan kids love to have
their pictures taken
I rode a small horse to
a mountaintop monastery
Elephant "taxi" to fort
up above Jaipur
The ladies of Rajasthan
The handsome men
Early morning at the Taj Mahal.
It was cold.
The Temples of Khajaharo
have erotic carvings
A few days after that I left for a long-planned trip to India
and Bhutan. This trip with OAT had been arranged before Jim and
I lived together and we were now facing a 25 day separation.
I flew first to New Delhi (via NYC and London) and after two
days of looking around that amazing city, the small tour group that
I had joined flew on Air Bhutan to Paro, via Kapmandu in Nepal. I
had long dreamed of visiting the Kingdom of Bhutan but the altitude
had worried me. But on the Peru trip a few years ago, I discovered
Diamox, a pill which, if taken daily, removes all the symptoms of
altitude sickness. We were met by our local guide and the 13 of us
fit nicely into a small mini-bus. Our driver was cheerful; the scenery
beautiful, the weather surprisingly warm for November and off we went
to Thimphu, the capital of the country. The King and his four queens
live in Thimphu. Years ago, he had married 4 sisters at the same time
and they each had their own palace, located on the same hillside a
little out of town.
This building houses
a monastery and the county seat...
...inside, the woodwork
A beautiful archway to a temple
The temple wall sparkled with mirrors
Bhutan is sensory overload, with the music, smells, scenery, art,
wooden carved buildings and interesting food. (Tastes sort of half
Chinese, half Indian). The people themselves are very good looking
and all wear traditional garb by government decree. Archery is their
national sport and we were able to watch early morning practice in
a field just behind our hotel. When they hit the target, some 300
feet away, the team does a little dance.
We visited forts, museums, schools, libraries in this remote and
mountainous world. I rode a small horse up to a monastery. The roads
were narrow and only partially paved, but our driver was amazing.
I hated to leave Bhutan but it was time to move on.
We flew back to Delhi and a few days later drove to Jaipur, in Rajasthan.
We rode elephants up to a red fort, shopped at wonderful street markets
and moving further west visiting the Ranthambore Sanctuary where we
had the good luck to see two tigers in the wild. We had the chance
to ride a train in India as well as local planes as we criss-crossed
the northern part of the country. Arriving in Agra, we were able to
see the Taj Mahal at dawn as well as later on in the day. The amazing
temples of Khajuraho were next, with their exotic and erotic carvings.
Another small plane ride and we arrived in Varanasi, which was the
highlight of the Indian trip for me. After a hair-raising ride in
a bicycle taxi across town towards the Ganges River, so crowded with
people we had to walk the last mile, we approached a spectacular festival
on the banks of the river. Priests with fire and drums were blessing
the waters, which are known as "Mother Ganga" to the Indians.
Transferring to small boats we watched the ceremony from the river.
We also put lighted candles sitting on flowers into the water.
Our group poses in front of
the Taj Mahal
We met a beautiful bride
getting married at our hotel
We returned the next morning to take a pre-dawn boat ride, watching
the sun rise on the river, the many people bathing on its banks and
several cremations which were also taking place at various "ghats"
along the river. Afterwards the ashes would be thrown into the waters.
Finally it was time to come home and the 30 plus hours to get from
Delhi to London to NYC (where I missed the connection to LA) were
stressful. But there was my wonderful Jim waiting for me at the airport,
both of us having suffered from this long separation more than anticipated.
I promised Jim I would never go away alone for that long period of
There was a beautiful Century Plant sprouting in the garden
of our apartment complex waiting for me. It only blooms once every
We went to Boise, Idaho to spend Christmas with Jim's family there
and Jim's other daughter, Amanda, joined us from Denver. Jim's son,
Geoffrey, living in Denver, had a new baby and he and wife, Marissa,
couldn't make the "family reunion," but we made it to Denver
late January and got to meet baby JR Weeks in person. Does this make
me a grandmother for the first time in my life?
Keep tuned for more adventures...