My Cruise at San Diego/Mexico..
My mothers favorite song is “Hotel California”, Its a coincidence that she found her biological father there. We made our first trip to California 2 years ago to see him, It was like he had always loved her, even without knowing who she was all of these years. Sadly, before we would make our way back to California, He passed away on December of 2007. California has had a gravitational pull on me and my mother, I felt at home the minute I got there. I knew that this time around, something huge would happen to push me there for good. I was right.
One day my best friend came across information about a Bettie Page cruise, I kinda Ignored it considering we’d have to fly out to San Diego just to board the ship to Mexico. I felt like It would all be impossible and possibly a waste of time till I met Marianne, the owner of a shop called Enz’s in Manhattan. I go there to buy alot of my Bettie Page and Stop Staring dresses. I felt like I had to go considering 2 people already told me about it, I figured it was around my birthday so it would be a good gift to myself.
My mother, Soraya and I headed to San Diego just a day before Halloween. I wanted my mother to be there because I wanted to bring out the youth in her again, I wanted to see her come out of her shell. Its funny because, we learned alot about each other that we didn’t know. You can never assume just because you live with someone, that you know everything about them. Who knew she liked vanilla bean frap’s, who knew I liked sushi?….
Soraya just happened to have friends who lived in SD who could show us around. They took us to all of the shopping areas but most importantly the sea port, where I fell in love with a sailor statue.
I wanted to cry considering, I wish I lived in that era, waiting on my sailor to come home. These days I feel like my love life is hopeless. I went home with 2 pairs of shoes, some pinup accessories, and a memory that I’ll never forget. Who ever constructed this huge masterpiece is a genius right down to the seams at the back of her stockings.
The next day, All Aboard the Carnival Elation!
It was the first time we had ever been on a ship, It was huge!..It was Halloween day, I couldn’t wait to bust out the costume I made..Of course for the day time, I got into character and wore a sailor outfit I haven’t worn in a long time. What made it even better was the food, all you can eatttttt. We ate like truckers everyday on this trip, Its amazing how we maintained our weight lol.
Every night at 8:15 we’d all go to the “Imagination” room for dinner. We put our costumes on and got ready to see and greet everyone from our private cruise. The first night I was a little reserved considering I’m quite shy. I wish I wasn’t, because eventually as the days passed and I started to open up, I realized they were amazing people.
I met the C.O of Bettie Page clothing that night, I was so afraid to talk to her, but when I did..She was very nice. I also met Bernie Dexter, a famous pinup model. Bernie is the nicest most sincere person I have ever met, I loved who she was and what she stood for. She rooted for me when I joined the Halloween costume contest at the “Cole Porter” lounge, and I won second place. My new friend Emily went as Sarah Palin and won first place. After the contest I watched my first rockabilly band play. Will and the hi rollers, Gizelle, and Omar were all amazing rockabilly bands/singers. They played every night and to be honest I miss there music.
I used to be a dancer, but nothing could prepare me for strolling and jiving. I LOVED IT. Thanks to Paul and Doris(you’ll hear more about her as I get through this blog), I discovered something else I could incorporate in my own dancing.
I realized that this was something I needed to be a part of. I felt like I was one out of this amazing group of people who got lost and ended up here in NY. That night I left with $225 from the contest, a preposition to model for the Bettie Page fashion show on the cruise, and a question as to wether I wanted to go back home.
Me, Bernie, Levi, and Tatiana
This cruise wouldn’t have been as fun without Peter Mundo, the Art Director of the BPC. He was so funny and made sure we were all entertained and accommodated.
The second day we rested up, we were always exhausted through out the trip because we were always doing something..That morning we went tanning on the boat. The view from the boat was amazing, I was in heaven. I felt a little bit of anxiety because I didn’t want to go back home, I juiced every second of my time there. We attended a pinup workshop with Bernie, She taught us different poses and told us how far she went to reach success. This woman is so inspiring. She knew what she wanted and she went for it. Her husband Levi was also very nice, and Its comforting to know that hes been there for her for so long, helping her, believing in her, loving her for who she was, who she is, and who she has become..
I also met Doris Day, another successful pinup model. Soraya and I saw her on Halloween and thought she was so beautiful, she is, inside and out. At the work shop she also gave us tips and told us what not to do. I loved her honesty and her character. A realist like myself.
That night I left with a plan, Inspired, pondering what my success story would be. After that we did a little shopping on the boat, My mother bought me cherry swavorsky earrings for my birthday present, I wore them through out the trip. Then the captains dinner! Everyone was all dolled up..
Thats Yocelin, shes Will’s sister, Her and her beau were very nice.
Martin, Rose and Ray…All fun characters of the trip. Rose and Ray were funny as hell on this trip.
After snorkeling and getting bit by tons of baby jellyfish, we all decided to get back on the boat. I felt a little sea sick so I laid down, but don’t be fooled I was being entertained by the entertainer herself, my best friend, Soraya Yd. This girl made everyone dance on the boat, she had us all dieing laughing. After a while I felt better and decided to join in on the fun. Everyone left that boat with a fun memory of a fun Soraya.
My mother was also entertaining, She finally broke out of her shell. It felt so good to see her dance again (she used to be a dancer). My mother was popping and locking on the boat, and had all of the people amazed and shocked that she could move like that. This was what I wanted to see from my mom, Her throwing all of her aging insecurities out of the window, and bring her young spirit back to life.
Next day, La Paz! After waiting on a line for the bus in the heat for a few minutes, we saw Jan, Tatianas husband and also C.O of BPC, he waves to us and invites us to take a cab instead to the main streets of LP. When we get there we invite him to stay with us because he was by himself, we got to know Jan and hes one of the most generous people Ive ever met. He was awesome. We decided to head to the church and then to the museum. Its crazy how poor Mexico is, The streets were poorly constructed, businesses with no air conditioning, and sea shells mounted in dirt. I saw passed that, It was beautiful to see all of these people making the best of what they had. They are so talented, most of the things Mexicans sell are things they’ve made by hand. We had a really good time.
See this guy down here. That’s Sergio, we all met on the first night. Hes an amazing instrumental player, He is also an awesome person. He spent most of the trip with us, we felt like we had known him for years.. My mother said she wanted to adopt him lol.
That night we all had to wear our skipper dresses (we got skipper dresses for free for being a part of the cruise). It was also the night of the fashion show me and Soraya were a part of. It was so much fun to model BP dresses. I also joined the BP look-a-like contest and won second place. The first place winner was Megan, one sweet gal, I was happy she won, shes awesome.
Doris looked amazing in that red dress.
We were exhausted the next day and decided to rest up. We attended the Kitten Deville, Kalani Kokonuts, and Tempest storm work shop. 3 amazing burlesque performers. Kitten was this wild shaken blond bombshell, Kalani was this Hawaiian beauty, Tempest is a legendary burlesque dancer from the 50s and is also a good friend of Bettie Page herself. They did amazing shows through out the cruise.
Next day..Ensenada! Yeah we did alot..We decided to go horseback riding and go to the markets there. We went horseback riding on the beach! It was absolutely AMAZING!. The markets were awesome too..Right next to them was this Mexican Blow hole. there was a cave under us that the waves went through, because it left no air on the inside it made a huge raging splash. It was awesome.
That night, would be the last night..Our farewell dinner.:( They sung me happy birthday, It was so sweet..So we dinned, we danced, and we got every ones contact info. I would hate to lose touch with the people I met on this cruise.
Our 2 FAVORITE waiters. U will be missed.:(
“Big bird”, “Martini”, me, “Serg saxophone playa”, and “Mixed black girl” LMAO inside joke. Where’s Greg? ok so greg was also awesome, and funny as hell.
This is Cinnamon, She was F* awesome, Her bubbly personality was so much fun to be around.
The next day we were back in San Diego for the Olivia Farewell party. Now everyone who knows me, knows that Olivia is one of my favorite artists next to Michael Turner(R.I.P). She was very down to earth and had a NY spirit about her. With the money I won from the Halloween contest, I bought all of her books and playing cards and had her sign them. I wanted to buy a painting but my luggage was already too much to carry. It was a very sad day for me, because I now had to tell everyone goodbye. I knew I was going home to a place I didn’t belong anymore.
Here goes Greg! Greg is going to be my tour guide when i go to Vegas in April. Yeah. Im going to Viva las Vegas next year, wouldn’t miss it for the world.
On our last day at San Diego we went shopping. I needed some retail therapy anyway right?
We ended up right back at this statue..That’s when reality really hit me. So I left SD that day with 6 pairs of shoes, 4 vintage hats, and a ton of other stuff lol. Why do we women think that retail therapy actually helps? It doesnt!…I still haven’t unpacked, Ive been procrastinating scattering all of my memories around my home. Hopefully when I go Vegas, I hope that I love it, Jan told me that If I ever went there I’d have a job at the Bettie Page store. Maybe fate’s current will bring me there for good?
Special thanks to my mother for making this trip an amazing one, to my best friend for all of her support and encouragement, To the people I met there who were all friendly and kind enough to make me a part of there culture, and to Peter Mundo, Tatiana, and Jan who coordinated this cruise so well.
I recommend this Private Cruise event to anyone who is old fashioned and wouldn’t mind having the best time of there life. For information on the next cruise and also Bettie Page clothing visit Bettiepagecruise.com and Bettiepageclothing.com
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