I want to talk about happy and hectic times leading up to Christmas; the good celebrations, reunions, entertainment and the hair-raising shopping.
Just to make things frenzied-er, we needed to fly to Washington state for five days (returning Dec. 23!) to celebrate David’s sister’s 50th wedding anniversary. So, ‘“calma, calma,’“ as we continentally calm ourselves, and prepare for a carefree and loving holiday.
And, just a few grateful comments for the good and heartening times this season has brought. The neighborhood Open Houses were cheery and welcoming. The fundraiser for Marilynn Lovell Matz was glorious and defined the meaning of heart. We sat with Bob Mackie (a long history there) and quelled with joy at the amazing performers, including the courageous and confounding wonderful Marilynn herself. A little luncheon at the Smoke House, hosted by my Manager Debralynn of Discover Mgt., gave garlic toast and treasured moments with darling Beverly Long and dear Jack Grinnage (friends since I was 17!). And our neighbor’s party, a yearly event at Dorene and John Martin’s home, was stashed with friends, of which they have many. They tried to cut down their list from past years but 100 more than they expected not to attend, did. Surprise! So, lots of good cheer with piano and singing, eating and eating. Had a sweet time catching up with my (almost brother) Earl Holliman and learned to know a lot of neighbors better and better.
I’m privileged to be on the SAG Awards Nominating Committee, so I had the responsibility to see mucho movies. Some screenings offered Q&As with directors and stars. At the ‘“Nine’“ special screening, we were flabbergasted that director Rob Marshall brought along Fergie, Penelope Cruz and Nicole Kidman, who were good enough to accompany him after the premiere that night. Very Ga Ga.
When I need peace during this holiday count down, I shut my eyes and spiritually return to Pacific’O, where all senses satisfy. I visualize the sand and the sea, and inhale the aroma of my pesto sauce wheat noodles topped with a mesmerizing Mahi…
Pacific’O, ‘“It’s All About Passion’“
If you are heading to Maui for the holidays (I’m jealous and we’ve barely returned), I strongly suggest you drive to Lahaina town for a memorable meal at one of the best dining spots anywhere! Pacific’O is one of (multi-award winning) Chef James McDonald’s brilliant local restaurants.
‘“Come in and share my passion for wine and food,’“ says co-owner, congenial Stephan Bel-Robert. Originally from Marseilles and now a part of Maui, Stephan told us about their famous O’o Farm in Kula, source of most of the restaurant’s salad greens, herbs and many vegetables. Freshness is the keyword here; the fish comes right from the ocean (right in front of us) and directly to the kitchen. Taste tells! We had different Mahi Mahi dishes. Mine was blackened and succulent, served over wheat pasta loaded with pesto. A great dish! David’s, crusted with sesame seeds and served with perfect rice, was his best ever. Before the main Mahi’s, our lovely young server Sarah suggested we tried a new starter of sashimi pizza (really a perfectly toasted tortilla). The fish was topped with tiny straws of beets (cooked only by ice water)—it’s worth a trip back. We also valued the purity of the all-organic O’o Farm’s salad with fresh greens, heirloom tomatoes and vegetables in season, tossed with extra virgin olive oil, citrus juice and Hawaiian sea salt. Sara surprised us with a sampling of their desserts. From creamy ice creams to fudge cake and baby blintzes beautifully garnished (how did they get two little yellow fish pix in the red sauce? (Google and ogle.) We now add our own Passion!
Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays, and respect for all. We’ll talk…