Wednesday, July 9 – Gaze headed off this morning with the church youth group. He’ll be gone for five days, at church camp in North Carolina. Poor baby, we barely had time to get his laundry clean so he’d had something to wear. Had to restock the fridge, since I had left barely anything in it, other than condiments. It was nice to sleep in our own beds last night… but don’t you hate coming back from vacation, to face all the stuff you have to do at home? We’d turned the AC off and opened the windows just a crack, so the house was still hot when we got home. And it’s been super-dry here, very little rain, and the grass is crunchy. Also, I forgot to ask someone to water the hanging baskets on the porch, so they were almost dead EEP. SOTD: Ralph Lauren Safari. I don’t know why, but I’m almost addicted to this stuff lately. Was longing for it while on vacation.
Thursday, July 10 – The CEO is sifting through his photos to find something suitable for entering in the county fair’s photography contest. He took a lot of photos… Of course he’s not happy with what’s been done on the farm while we’ve been gone, but then he never is. Nobody else gets as much done as he could (or as much as he expects to get done), and there’s all that equipment to be fixed too. Tractors need a lot of maintenance.
The last time we took a “family” vacation that was longer than a weekend was four years ago, when we went to South Carolina. We took Bookworm on the Big College Tour trip two summers ago, but didn’t take the boys with us. And last summer she went to Europe for ten days with a school group. But other than that, it’s been a long time. We had hoped she could come join us for the last few days, but her work schedule, and the hoops she’d have had to jump through to get to an airport, prevented it. Wish she could have gone. SOTD: Cristina Bertrand #3.
Friday, July 11 –We cleaned up the house a little, Taz and me, and had The CEO’s mom come over to have dinner and see the photos. I think she was a little disappointed not to see Gaze, but pleased that he was getting to go to camp. Dinner: grilled marinated chicken, rice, rolls, asparagus and steamed green beans, plus brownies for dessert. SOTD (after cleaning up): YSL Paris. It’s so nice.
Saturday, July 12 – More cleaning up today. I suggested a Redbox movie, but The CEO was not thrilled by the selection so we didn’t. Eh. SOTD: More Ralph Lauren Safari, which I find sort of delicious.
Sunday, July 13 – Our church is hosting the regular worship services at Claytor Lake this month. This is a state park, with a large dam-created lake on the New River, and it boasts plenty of fishing, boating, watersports, camping and hiking. There’s a tradition of Sunday morning worship at 9 am at the lake’s gazebo, and our church is serving there the month of July. So how often do you get to have church wearing shorts, sitting in lawn chairs, with a terrific view of the lake? Awesome. SOTM: Parfums de Rosine Rose d’Ete, a summer staple for me.
Gaze returned with the youth group from church camp this afternoon. Unfortunately, we weren’t able to be there to pick him up. Instead, The CEO and I attended the funeral of the father of a good friend. Bob Lilly was an educator, a musician, a family man, but most of all he was a man who knew how to enjoy life. I’m going to tell you about his biggest brush with fame, and some of the stories his son Bobby has told about it over the years.
Ever see “Dirty Dancing” – the 1987 original? The film was largely filmed at Mountain Lake Hotel and Resort, in Pembroke, Virginia, and most of the extras were local. Mr. Lilly’s daughter Terri and a friend wanted to audition at the call for extras, so he took them and then found himself a folding chair and waited, people-watching. He was soon approached by a casting agent presenting him with a clipboard and a pen. “We’d like for you to fill this information sheet out,” she told him.
“Oh, no, that’s okay, I’m not here to audition. I just brought my daughter.”
“You don’t understand. We want you to fill this out.” And just like that, Mr. Lilly became an extra in the movie. (Bobby suggests that they knew a character when they saw one.)
If you’ve seen the movie, you’ve met Mr. Lilly. He’s the smiling guy in the blue shirt and tweed cap standing next to Baby during the dance lesson in the gazebo, early in the movie. When the cast of extras were rehearsing dances, one of the directorial staff separated the people who could dance from the people who couldn’t, and herded the dancers off to another room while the non-dancers stayed involved with the dance instructors. Mr. Lilly got the staff person’s attention and suggested that they were taking the wrong group of people. “No, no,” he was assured. “No, this is what we want.”
The instructor then had the non-dancers run through the steps again, and the staff started culling the group. Like this: “You and you, sit down over here. Okay, now you and you and you two, find a seat. Good, now you sit down please.” It went that way until the group still on the floor was following the instructor pretty well. Those people got to take a break and sit down.
And then what happened is that they brought the principals, the real actors, in and had them learn the steps with the people who had been culled out for lack of dancing skill. Somebody placed Mr. Lilly right next to Baby (Jennifer Grey) – and it’s his foot she steps on during the dance lesson. I’m told that particular scene was filmed in one take. So there’s Bobby’s dad, immortalized in celluloid, wearing golf shorts and black sneakers and a goofy grin – having a fabulous time, as usual.
“Dirty Dancing,” despite its silly movie ending (oh please), is a favorite, and we’ll usually make time to watch it when it comes on, but I’ll point out that it is fairly peculiar to see a movie filmed in a place you know. In the first scene, Baby and her family are driving down what’s labeled “New York Thruway,” but those of us from around here are prone to saying, “Oh, no, it’s not – that’s Rt. 460 West outta Blacksburg.” We always repeat Baby’s memorable doofus line, “I carried a watermelon.” And we always commemorate the dance lesson in the gazebo by yelling, “That’s Bobby’s dad’s foot!” I expect we’ll still do that.
SOTE was Chanel No. 5, vintage parfum. A fitting tribute.