I wanted to grab my iPhone and run into the rose bushes to tell you please come on over. I was so sorry you couldn’t come with us. I thought, “this will be an enchanted evening”. It was.
We arrived at the lovely Glorietta Court home which resembled no other house on the block. A unique reflection of the owner.
A rose garden lined a terraced path to the house and a large dove cage housed cooing Morning Dove that great her guests. All landscaping green and lush with white and some yellow roses. Stone statuary everywhere peeking out of the landscaping. You got the feeling that there would be a surprise at every turn and there was.
Greeting us at the door was a beautiful, graceful lady in layered, floor length clothing. Contessa Elizabeth Kirkpatrick. A green velvet flowing jacket with
saucer-sized silk flowers on her lapel. Think: Turn of the Century European.
Elizabeth graciously invited us into her sanctuary of collectibles, layer upon layer of paintings, end tables weighing heavily with fabrics, tarnished silver, rhinestone jewelry, mounted antelope heads, antique frames and my favorite a Black Diamond mink coat as a chair back cover in her tiny self-constructed study of carved Chinese screens and floor to ceiling momentos. I could have lived in that self-constructed little room alone.No space unadorned. Paintings everywhere. Crystal chandeliers in every room but deliciously random. The flooring of the house was removed and replaced with herringbone brick laid by her Italian husband, Guam(?) pronounced Zham?, who did the entire transformation exquisitely. Think: Tail of the Yak as a little sister to Elizabeth’s home. The kitchen, alone, would take a week to savor. She married an Italian man, moved to Italy for three years and lived the life of Marlena de Blasi,
My favorite author. Both American women who cherish living abroad and building their nest from the fabric of their surroundings.
A tour of the gardens yielded even more surprises everywhere. Rococco guilded mirror hung on a Plane tree. Chicken coop condo with their own chandelier, a vintage sign above their nest reading BEASTIES. , little sheds of chicken wire that could be converted into cozy reading rooms as she so well described. Reaching the 2nd tier, we were served wine in a tarnished champagne bucket, a blackberry/strawberry fruit crumble and cheeses while sitting at a bistro table with rose bushes nipping at our necks. And the finale, an unusual treat of spun Iranian pink sugar called Fairy Floss. It looked like a platter of pink insulation but you pinch a hunk and put it in your mouth only to feel it disappear like cotton candy leaving a sweet residue.
Saying goodbye was like leaving a fairytale.