One of my neighbors left me a handwritten note inviting me to lunch at her house.
I didn't know what to expect but ran down to the market the day of to get some flowers.
She has always been super nice (she knows my landlord) but before there was a huge language barrier. La Signora speaks Italian and French. Now that my Italian is stronger we can have a conversation.
There were a dozen women or so at the luncheon. The average age was mid 50s. I was the youngest person there and the oldest lady was probably in her 70s.
These women were fab. Smart, funny and fly (the accessories!). One woman said her wrinkles were getting worse and her friend replied, "don't worry nobody is wearing their glasses." There was plenty of food and wine.
The only other American at the party was African-American and has lived in Italy for over 40 years. She lives in the Center and was telling me what it was like living in Rome back then. She has known my neighbor for 17 years. All the women at the luncheon work out at the same gym.
Since that luncheon we bump into each other all the time. Hilarious.
I found out that my building is over 400 years old. Crazy.
When I lived in NYC, I knew my neighbors and our doormen. There was a sense of community.
I really missed that sense of community when I moved to L.A. You can find pockets of it depending on the area. I never did.
In my building, people barely spoke to each other. I lived next door to this one guy for years, never knew his name, or anything about him other than he had an annoying little dog and boyfriends with anger management issues. He didn't seem to work (he was home all the time) yet drove a Mercedes. I thought he could be a struggling actor but then he would actually have to leave the house for auditions or something.
Here, it's more like NYC or DC (where I lived after college). It cracks me up when I see one of the cashiers from the supermarket on the street and they yell, "Buon giorno!"
Some of the women at the luncheon were married and had grandchildren. The conversation was lively and covered a lot of topics. I tried to keep up. It was like hanging out with the Italian version of the Golden Girls.
The lack of plastic surgery really stood out to me. I don't know any women in L.A. in that age range who haven't had work done. Hello, women younger than me are getting brow lifts.
I thought about how older women are devalued or mocked in American society. It's ridiculous. I had to stop reading certain film websites/blogs because of all the hatred toward the "old" women of SATC 2. Criticize the movie but to say these women shouldn't even be on screen with their "leathery skin"? Are you kidding me? What's that about?
Love this scene from "Something's Gotta Give". So dead on.