Squawk Radio

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

From Christie: P.S. I Love You!

Ninety miles from Hollywood is Palm Springs, California, where former presidents and foreign dignitaries play golf, where the rich recover from addiction or embarrassment, where celebrities from all walks of fame pursue mindless pleasures. Fifty-five years ago, it was here that Norma Jean Baker was discovered and a decade after that it became the favorite hangout of the Rat Pack. Now a new generation of hipsters is moving in, drawn to the mid-century modern architecture and the atmosphere of carefree hedonism.

Between spa appointments and tee times, beautiful people sit beneath misters at sidewalk cafés, bobbing to the bossa nova tunes oozing through outdoor speakers. While golf carts are fitted with holders for martini shakers, their über-cool owners swap sightings of old school-cool residents such as Kirk Douglas and Connie Stevens.

Palm Springs is hot sun and haute camp and the setting for my latest book, THE CARE AND FEEDING OF UNMARRIED MEN. Although it’s only a couple of hours away from my home, I’d never visited there until I needed to do research for this book and its predecessor, AN OFFER HE CAN’T REFUSE. I couldn’t believe what I’d been missing! From the wind farms on the way into town to the amazing green of the famous golf courses (did you know the glamorous Thunderbird car is named after the even more glamorous Palm Springs Thunderbird Country Club?), this area has an identity separate from that of the rest of Southern California.

On my last visit there it poured (which is why THE CARE AND FEEDING opens with rain) but my younger son and I still had a wonderful time. We traveled to the top of Mt. San Jacinto on a tram and visited Frank Sinatra’s grave (check out my website for a picture of me there, taken by my son). I also introduced my little guy to his first professional massage, which is now his idea of nirvana.

I hope you’ll consider traveling with me too, by experiencing Palm Springs through my latest book. It really is a unique and absolutely fab place—I’m so glad I didn’t miss it!

Is there a special location in your own backyard that you discovered after years of passing it by?
Connie Brockway, 5:16 PM