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Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Hometown Pasadena

John and I fell in love with Pasadena at first sight. For our first Christmas here I found the perfect gift for him at Vroman's: a book called Hometown Pasadena. Editor Colleen Dunn Bates had gathered some of the best talent in town to help put a lot of information into a small, friendly volume. It was a guide to entertainment, restaurants, sports, surrounding communities, architecture, schools--pretty much everything going on in the San Gabriel Valley. It even contained a section entitled "Cemeteries We Love."

John was thrilled when he opened his gift that Christmas morning--almost as thrilled as I was when I opened mine and found the copy of Hometown Pasadena he'd bought for me. We kept them both.

One of the advantages to living in Pasadena is it's possible to cross paths with locals you admire. So you can bet I was delighted when I met Colleen Dunn Bates this past January. She's interesting and fun, like her books. She's also got what John calls "about twenty brains." You'd need them, to do what she does. Besides Hometown Pasadena (now available in the new 2009-10 edition), she's also editor and publisher at Prospect Park Books, which has eight books in its stable so far. Colleen also heads up Hometown Pasadena's website, which debuted its new look yesterday. I have no idea how she packs so much information into a site that's classy, well-organized, and constantly updated.

I'm very excited that Hometown Pasadena is currently featuring an interview with me. I've just gotta toot that horn because it's such an honor. In a way I feel like I've come full circle. Life has many circles, I suppose, and I'm grateful for this one. So I'd like to thank Colleen and send you all over to Hometown Pasadena to click, comment, and enjoy.

(Photo: a view of Macy's on Lake Avenue.)

25 comments:

Cafe Pasadena said...

CDB is funny, and a sweetheart. And, I love her books.
But, enuf about U2!

Bibi said...

What a delightful post, especially about the two identical Christmas presents--a happier form of O'Henry's 'Gift of the Magi'!

I was immediately attracted to your photo---at first I thought it was somewhere in the Arab Emeriates, with all the white and sky!

Colleen said...

Ah, shucks! Back at you, Petrea. And I love today's photo-- it's fantastic!

And Cafe Pasadena.... thanks for the nice words, but why "enuf about U2"? That was just one post! Just wait until the fall frenzy hits.

J+P said...

Dogs just don't "get" music, esp. if it's Irish.

altadenahiker said...

Well aren't you the dark horse! Loved it.

Susan C said...

Especially love that you and John gave each other the same present.

I just discovered Pasadena at Home at Vroman's and spent about 15 minutes flipping through it. It's on my wish list now.

Susan C said...

PS Loved your interview

Virginia said...

P
A well deserved honor and I hope to read it.
Now this photo today is drop dead gorgeous. Interesting angle makes it just one of your best. WOW!
V

Now I"m off to read your interview. Are you giving autographs??

Margaret said...

Sweet story, and I loved yesterday's interview with you.

Cafe Pasadena said...

U2, 2 me, is about 2 certain ladies from Pasadena.

But, more than enuf about them! Time for me 2 get outta here & look for my next meal.

Altadenablogmaster said...

That's a sweet story, and the interview is a deserved nod to all your work, Petrea! Your blog (and Hometown Pasadena!) are all a wonderful part of the richness of living here!

Petrea said...

Today is one of those days where I have scant time at the computer (well, scant time at my own computer) for answering comments individually. But just a few notes:

O'Henry--I like that, Bibi! And There's a very good UAE Daily Photo, by the way, but I haven't checked it lately.

Thanks, Colleen. I think the site looks great and I'm a big fan of you and your books.

I had to look up "dark horse."

Autographs are free, V. Don't expect to get anything for it on ebay.

Margaret, thanks for being the ice-breaking comment on the interview.

I'll be back later, thanks all!

cieldequimper said...

Fantastic photo. I love it!

Katie said...

Stunning photo - it looks so warm! It's so great that you and hubby came up with the same gift; that says so much. Very fun interview with you at the Hometown Pasadena website! I'll admit that my eye strayed to the $1 cocktails for Gold Line riders though.

pasadenapio said...

My brother and sister-in-law visited a few months ago for the first time and were impressed with Pasadena's "cosmopolitan" environment.

Their favorite of all the places I took them? Distant Lands, where they scoured through all the books about Pasadena and took a few home with them.

Christie said...

How hilarious that you bought each other the same book! That is great! A case of two minds thinking alike.

Love the bright and bold colors and lines of the photo, Petrea!

Ms M said...

Congrats on your interview -- well done! And I love the story of your first Christmas and giving each other the same gift. Reminds me of an O'Henry short story...ah, yes, I see Bibi also thought of Gift of the Magi.
PS: great photo, too!

Petrea said...

Merci, CQ!

Katie, I missed that. Cocktails on the Gold Line is a great idea, as long as the driver doesn't get any.

I love Distant Lands! One of the most fantasy-provoking places in town. (A fantastic travel book and supply store, FYI to the non-locals.)

Thank you, Christie, thanks Ms. M!

Shell Sherree said...

Toot toot ~ and so you should! Lovely interview, Petrea, and you deserve to be featured. I knew nothing about Pasadena B.P {Before Petrea}. I also love that you and John bought each other the same book! Another gorgeous photo, by the way.

Dina said...

That is so sweet about the Christmas presents.
We are proud of you for being interviewed. I loved reading more about you, Petrea.

AmyR said...

Congratulations on the interview. It's a wonderful website!

The photo's great; I like the opposing lines.

Kim said...

First, I LOVE this photo. It's very special. And second, that's so funny. . .like a Pasadena version of Gift of the Magi! And third, amazing lady and so glad she has featured you (although you've always figured as a bright star in our skies). This is great!
-Kim

Petrea said...

Thanks, everybody. This was special to me.

USelaine said...

You already know that I loved your interview (Willits is finally famous!), and now I'll tell you I love this photo!

Laurie said...

THis is SOOOOO cool, P. I am late to the party on this one. Congratulations!