Sunday, May 09, 2010

Aarti! Cedar Grove! Poppies! Nutbag Dalmatians!

You guys! I finally met Aarti Paarti! In person! I didn’t even plan it!

Aarti Paarti is better known as the incredibly lovely and Faithful Friend O The Blog Aarti Sequeira. She is the mutual friend of the equally lovely and Faithful Friend O The Blog Nadine (who has a blog and hasn’t updated it since September of last year. Bad Nadine! Bad bad Nadine!)

So on Friday night, we all went to support Nadine and her improv group over at the Hothouse, and I saw Aarti in the lobby and attacked her, screaming, “Oh my GOD! You’re Aarti Paarti!” And then in a quick split second, I remembered that she wouldn’t know who I am, since I do such a good job of making sure nobody sees my face on my blog, so I follow up with, “I’m Amy The Writer!” And then she started screaming, and it was a lovefest all around.

Aarti needs to get used to strange people attacking her in public, because she’s one of the contestants on The Next Food Network Star, premiering June 6th, 2010. Check her out here.

However, I will say this – she’s f’ing GORGEOUS in person. Seriously. That hair, that skin, that smile, that warmth. Just such a lovely person inside and out. And JUST maybe, she’ll help me figure out what I can cook in my wretched kitchen nook, when all I have to work with are two burners, a toaster oven, a microwave, and two crazy Dalmatians just outside the back door.

Yeah, let’s talk about those crazy Dalmatian landlords, shall we? I am going to sleep SO GOOD tonight, because Pepe and Pembleton’s human owners were on a Viking River Cruise, for the past two weeks, so that meant the Running Of The Dalmatians was in full effect for two weeks. TWO SOLID WEEKS of getting up at 5:45am and running through Griffith Park with two Dalmatians that think they’re birds and don’t understand why they haven’t taken flight yet.

Here they are, when we’re still walking up the hill in Griffith Park. It’s two separate leashes tied to one belt around my waist. This is preferable to two leashes on two separate belts around my waist. Because these guys are so insane, the first thing they do is run themselves in circles which ties the leashes up in knots. It’s easier to untangle them when it’s one belt. As opposed to two.

So off we go, much like Santa on his sleigh, pulled by two ADD Dalmatians instead of reindeer. Most of the time we run about two miles through Griffith Park, dumping us out onto Vermont. But this morning, I detoured us up to Cedar Grove in Griffith Park.

One of the unexpected things I’ve grown to appreciate about Los Angeles is how there are these pockets of places you wouldn’t expect to find, and Cedar Grove is one of them. It’s like stepping into the woods of your childhood, or maybe any church camp you went to in your youth. You could be anywhere BUT Los Angeles, and yet here you are, surrounded by your own wooded oasis, and two nutbag Dalmatians who insist on peeing every five steps, and eating grass every ten steps. One day, I’m going up here with friends and no dogs and do a picnic lunch or something. It’s seriously awesome.

There are points where the path is so narrow, and covered in flower bushes, that you have to go on faith that yes, that’s a trail, and yes, it will continue even though you can’t see it, and you have to jockey for space with two Koo Koo for Coco Puff Dalmatians who are literally tying themselves in knots. But you keep going.

Because when you do, you see this. That is an honest to God poppy field. In Los Angeles. I KNOW! They’re white poppies, and not the red and pink ones we know so well from Wizard of Oz. Our path takes us through the poppies, and in the six o’clock hour, before the heat of the day hits, when it’s you in a poppy field with two Crazypants Dalmatians trying to make it down a very narrow and very steep path and getting whacked in the face with poppies, which really do put you to sleep with their high pollen count (thank God I made it back to the house in time), you think I can’t believe this is my life. And it is good.

Check out a very rare picture of me, the poppies, and my strangely thick earlobe.

Check out Pepe and Pembleton at the end of the trail. They did that all by themselves. I wonder why they’re not going anywhere. ☺

Yep, I’m sleeping AWESOMELY tonight.

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