Monday, May 03, 2010
malibu memories

I took this picture quite a few years ago (with an analog camera....) while walking on Broad Beach in Malibu.....I was visiting friends who lived there at that time---I believe it was a Labor Day gathering.....The thing about Broad Beach is----it is really wonderfully wide and the houses are all set waaaaay back from the ocean, as you can kind of see in this picture. That is not the case with a lot of the homes in Malibu and in Santa Monica, too. In some of those areas the houses are almost right on top of the ocean....So...Broad Beach is aptly named......Getting in closer in this same picture..... It is a wonderful Beach to walk on because of the amazing terrain....The mountains in the background....The people walking, plus lots of little birds as there are on many beaches....And then there are the animals, as well...... He was a very cute doggie....and quite friendly, too....... The perfect name for him would be "Scruffy"....but I have no idea what his name actually was....It could have been "Spike" or "Bobo", for all I know......Below, here is the view looking South on Broad Beach......... You can see the Dunes in this picture above....The Dunes kind of separate the houses and the back yards from the beach itself....Below, an example of that---I did not take this picture, but it is an accurate depiction of the dunes as I have seen them. Though, in this particular picture the ocean looks much closer than it is, or at least as it actually was at my friends house.....I actually performed a Wedding Ceremony on some Dunes very much like this, right outside their house. And it was just the couple who were getting married and their two witnesses, and me.....That was on a Wednesday, around noon. The following Sunday, the 'official' big Wedding was held there at the house and about 200 people were at that Ceremony. After the "Dunes" ceremony, we drove South on Pacific Coast Highway to this wonderful rather famous restaurant called Geoffrey's......And we had a lovely celebratory Wedding Lunch at this very popular Malibu watering hole---always good food and a view that won't quit. The Bride had ordered a Sky Writing plane that spelled out "I Love You" inside a Heart in honor of her spouse. Ir was very very romantic---sitting outside drinking a bit of champagne and eating delicious food. That was in early May of 1991. The end of June that same year, I turned 60 years old and had a big party at The Bel Age Hotel in West Hollywood. We celebrated all weekend long. And one of the special things we did was to have a small but wonderful lunch at Geoffrey's...... Just the 'family'. That is my sister Gene in the shocking pink top, my dear friend Betty, then me, and then my sister Robin's daughter Debbie along with her then fiance, Eran. Robin was unable to make the trip....Debbie and Eran married later that year. My brother was taking the picture and that is why he is not in this picture. Somewhere I have some other snapshots of that lunch....I must find them.
Traveling further on down the road---the road being The Pacific Coast Highway, is the Malibu Colony.
The Colony is a very special area. It was one of the very first private type gated community's in the Los Angeles area and was developed sometime in the late 1920's or early 1930's. It is famous for attracting lots of Movie Stars because it is really a very small area with it's own private beach. There are houses right on the beach and then there are houses on the other side of the interior road, as well. The very first time I visited The Colony was back in the mid 1960's when Lee Grant and her husband, Joe Feury, had rented a house there.....Lee was working on the television series, "Peyton Place" at the time, and they had moved here from Manhattan.....The house they rented was not on the beach side, but, they had a pool.....Below, a picture of me with Joey, sitting by the pool, taking 'the sun'. My Lordy, we were young....! Sammy and I spent many an evening there and many a Sunday afternoon, too....They loved to entertain, and still do, and had friends 'in' almost every Sunday. Later, they rented another house up near Trancas..... Trancas is north of The Colony and that house was up on a hill above PCH with a view of the Ocean.....We all called it The Red House, and then The Clutter House---a rather grizzly reference to the family home written about by Truman Capote in "In Cold Blood". It wasn't that anything bad had happened there in The Red House, it was the look of the house--kind of like a farm house, plus it was pretty isolated....Lots of great Sunday afternoons happened there, too.....I don't have a picture of that house, but my very favorite picture-of-all-time-ever-taken-of-me, was taken by Joey, there at The Clutter House....... It was taken out back in their yard, facing the ocean.....I always felt that Joey caught a truly special moment in this photograph---a very real moment. I was looking down at something---a flower or something---and to me it shows some interior something going on that wasn't planned in any way......

Many years later they bought a piece of property there in Malibu and they built this wonderful home---it wasn't on the beach either....But, it had the great ocean view and was a very warm and beautiful house....And lots more entertaining took place there, too.....Below, a picture of Lee and me from Thanksgiving, 1978....just a snapshot, but we do look like we are having a good time..... I often wished that I had had the money to buy a little place on the Beach somewhere in Malibu...but, I never did. It was always out of my reach, financially speaking, and truthfully, the 'commute' going into town was kind of brutal even back then. And now? Well, traffic in Los Angeles is a nightmare. Though I can see why people want to live there by the ocean....You do feel like you are in another place entirely far away from 'the business'.....
Back to Broad Beach.....Carroll & Nancy O'Connor had two houses there on Broad Beach road. They lived in one and worked in the one right next door---Nancy painting and Carroll writing, among other things.....Carroll use to call on me to help him with casting plays that he had written and wanted to hear read......Carroll was a member of Theatre West from back in those very early years, and that is how we met originally....This picture below is me and the wonderful Phil Abbott and Betty G. and Carroll, after having one of these 'readings'. Both of these houses were right on the Pacific Ocean and you can see it behind us......Having grown up on The Atlantic Ocean, with Jones Beach, etc....I never thought the Pacific was as pretty....Plus it feels a lot more dangerous than The Atlantic, at least The Atlantic on Long Island....This ocean here can have quite a strong under toe, and the waves can knock you down really hard....But, to be able to live on the ocean or near enough to see it every day is a pretty remarkable thing in a city of 10 million plus.....And all of the people I knew who did live here really really loved it......

More To Come.......

Links to this post:


Anonymous Anonymous
had this to say:

As I love the beach and ocean, this is a great post. It gives us an insider's view of West Coast beaches. I'm an East Coast Beach person, so this was a treat.

Leaving for Bermuda on May 23 for a week's cruise - Norwegian Dawn. Am sooooooooo looking forward to this. Celebrating our 35th anniversary.

It is in the 90's here and hot as hell. Hope you are doing well. Love, Anne

Monday, May 3, 2010 at 4:40:00 AM PDT 

had this to say:

Great memories and photos, though I still like the "playing pool" photo of you the best.


Monday, May 3, 2010 at 5:52:00 AM PDT 

had this to say:

What a beautiful place with wonderful memories! The vibrant colors are striking, and the rhythm of the ocean life affirming. Thanks, Naomi.

Monday, May 3, 2010 at 6:45:00 AM PDT 

had this to say:

Just found your blog while researching Musso & Frank Grill.

We moved to LA in '97, and it's so wonderful to read about it from the perspective of a long-time resident. We have friends who live in Malibu - on the mountain side above Paradise Cove - and our son used to go to surf camp on Broad Beach. I haven't been there in years. Lovely. Nice to see your photos.

Monday, May 3, 2010 at 8:39:00 AM PDT 

had this to say:

Hi Naomi,
Great memories and beautiful photos! Really you have a fantastic photo archive.
Love specially your photo taken by Joey. It is very expressive.
Thanks for sharing your amazing memories!

Monday, May 3, 2010 at 9:19:00 AM PDT 

had this to say:

I love that photo of you too. And oh the stories those sands on Malibu could tell, eh? I feel "less" when I do not live near a lake, bay, or at least an ocean view.

Monday, May 3, 2010 at 10:35:00 AM PDT 

had this to say:

Thanks for the insight into Malibu, it's beaches, people and homes... All we really get to see/hear of it here in the UK is on TV shows.

Great memories :)

Monday, May 3, 2010 at 12:37:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

I love those pictures. I always wondered which celebs got to live on the good beaches. And like you say about the population being so large, I guess all the money in the world can't buy something that's not for sale. I wonder what the waiting lists are like for those homes?

Monday, May 3, 2010 at 1:12:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

Beautiful beaches and nice history. I love your stories about the way things were, things you did and seeing what the people and places looked like.

Monday, May 3, 2010 at 2:52:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

You've really had a wonderful life, Naomi, and I know you are grateful for all the good memories and all the good friends you've made over the years.

Monday, May 3, 2010 at 4:58:00 PM PDT 

Anonymous Anonymous
had this to say:

So funny! My husband and I were talking about Peyton Place at dinner tonight and then you mentioned it in your blog. We both recalled how our moms would make sure that they were home and we were QUIET when their favorite show came on!

Monday, May 3, 2010 at 5:35:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

Priceless memories with wonderful you never have to forget and with your beautiful post, all you have to do is reread and instant nostalgia...

This was a great post...

Dorothy from grammology

Monday, May 3, 2010 at 7:20:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

amazing again.. i love your photo's... i want to go out to Cali sometime and just walk one of the beaches. I love to swim but dont know how.. i love to play in the water..

Monday, May 3, 2010 at 7:54:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

I bet those houses along the coastline is very expensive now. What a lovely ocean and even when were in California cruising along the coastline we had a scenic view :D

Tuesday, May 4, 2010 at 12:36:00 AM PDT 

Blogger Mar
had this to say:

Wonderful post as always and fantastic memories. Love your favorite picture too, you remind me of Ann Bancroft.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010 at 1:04:00 AM PDT 

had this to say:

Thank you for taking me a place I would never get to see but have always been curious about. I love your stories of the fine people who have filled your life with such joy.
That is a really neat picture of you. I feel an underlying sadness though. Good to see you smiling so in the next ones.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010 at 5:06:00 AM PDT 

had this to say:

What a gorgeous coastline! One of my desires is to drive that Ocean Highway one day, but California is a long long way from Ontario! That beach is splendid. I love to be by the sea, having spent my childhood within a couple minutes walk of a beach. The only time I visited California I was in Laguna Beach and the Pacific was SO COLD! I could harly bear to go in any further than my knees.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010 at 5:31:00 AM PDT 

had this to say:

I walked the beach with and then memory lane ... transported for a time and missing the beach and the old days.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010 at 6:12:00 AM PDT 

Blogger Pat
had this to say:

Another lovely photo story. The photograph of you looking down is really special. I'm wondering if Broad Beach is the one where James Mason walked into the ocean to his death in the film with Judy Garland when she sang The man who got away'. i can't remember the name of the film but I'm sure you will know the one I mean;)

Tuesday, May 4, 2010 at 3:30:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

what great they say I'm lucky I remember anything let alone as much as you remember!!! Fabulous Naomi!

Funny. I lived in Encino a few years and then Sherman Oaks (total of 10 yrs) and the only time I saw the Pacific ocean is when the plane flew over it taking off or landing at LAX !

Wednesday, May 5, 2010 at 3:13:00 AM PDT 

had this to say:

Such a lovely place Naomi! As I was reading your post and all the homes on the beaches now, can you imagine how it was when the first settlers came to this area and just saw that beautiful ocean and beach and no homes! Hard to imagine it like that, but it must have been and awesome sight!

Geoffrey's sounds like a wonderful place to eat and what a view!! Oh, I'd love to eat there!!

An interesting trip down memory lane that I enjoyed very much!!

Hugs to you and dear Sweetie!!

Wednesday, May 5, 2010 at 9:23:00 AM PDT 

had this to say:

Joey's photo of you is a really good one! But I don't think I've seen a "bad" one of you yet, lol!

I love looking at your old photos. Thank you for sharing.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010 at 6:37:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

That picture of you that you said is your favorite is what I call a Zen photo. It captures the moment and says something beyond just looking like the person. Great photo and interesting article

Thursday, May 6, 2010 at 4:40:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

I am having the time of my life reading about you - lol! This is a fabulous post. Those really were the "good old days", weren't they? Those photographs are so much fun to look at...I really do like that photo that is your favorite but MY favorite is the one of you shooting pool at the top of your blog!

My daughter lived in L.A. up until this year (when she moved back to Minnesota...WHAT WAS SHE THINKING???) and we spent part of almost every winter out there.

We housesat for a couple who live in Manhattan Beach while they traveled. I loved it. The houses on "The Strand" are right on the beach so I could identify with your description. Not so sure I'd like that because people are constantly walking or biking or roller blading along their.

Anyway, I'm off to read more of your adventures. You really need to publish a memoir.

Sunday, June 6, 2010 at 5:06:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

I am the granddaughter of Dr. John and Jean Hough who lived at 31666 Broad Beach Road in Malibu, during the era you write about. I am trying to find some information on the house which burned down in 1978 in the Malibu Agoura fire. The architect was Clare Slaughter, of whom I also cannot find any information. Perhaps you knew my grandparents? He was a dentist and had is office in the back part of the home. Many local neighbors and others went to him. My name is Anne I would be thrilled to hear from you....

Thursday, June 23, 2016 at 2:09:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

Hi Anne....Very nice to hear from you. I hope you come back to read this.....
I did not know your Grandparents and, in fact, never really knew that many people who lived in the Malibu area. I am also not familiar with the Architect you mentioned. I'm sorry to say that I am not much help to you here, at all.....
If you would like to email me, here is my email address:
myrtillo1984 AT Yahoo DOT com.

Looking forward to hearing from you if you feel like writing me.

Friday, June 24, 2016 at 12:06:00 AM PDT 

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