I am a California native, a San Fernando Valley girl. A Val before it was cool.
I grew up in Encino and attended Birmingham High. A Brave.
I graduated from California Lutheran College, Thousand Oaks, with a degree in biology.
A Kingsman. Good old days at The Lu.
Concocting herbal creations for health and well-being
Our Deep Muscle Rub has put me on the map
I'm a one-woman operation with more things to do than hours in the day
And then one Saturday afternoon (Sept 23, 2023, the equinox), Michelle from EnjoySLO
stopped in at the farm stand. And made a video.
As a young girl, I was told I had a healing touch.
A soothing voice.
A comforting smile.
And Dr. Kalavros, a family friend and European doctor of the highest esteem and shrouded in mystery --who met with Mussolini and was the last lover of film beauty Linda Darnell before she tragically died in a fire ---told me I should become a nurse.
But I wanted to be a vet.
Even though the only animal I ever had was a tortoise.
Being the first in our family to receive a college degree, I was gifted a trip to the homeland -Greece- with my wild spinster Auntie Georgia. Little did I know I was leaving behind a promising career, safety and security, and the love of my life.
The trip turned my world upside down.
My new home was at the heart of the island of Lesbos --also called Mytilini, in the outskirts of the mountain village of Agiassos. I lived near the cafenio at Agio Dimitri, just below the ever-flowing fresh water spring called The Tsingos. Always ice cold, and renowned across the island for its healing properties, this blessed water was incorporated in our soft drinks (an enterprise my first husband, Themis--- who was the brewmaster at Fix Brewery in Athens, undertook).
The refreshing libations were sought after at the cafenia throughout Lesbos, and I ---known to all as the Americana, made the deliveries.
This activity quickly got me labeled "poutana" (whore) because, back then, I was the only woman who drove a truck on the island.
(More to come with time)
Looking for cures:
A bout with cancer
And a year later, a broken leg --- with a prognosis of living out the rest of my days with a cane
But these long legs weren't willing to abdicate their duty to the rest of me.
Another injury, another discovery.
Dare I admit my mind was somewhere else when I grabbed the handle of the heavy Bourgeat pan I had just pulled out of the oven?
I was reminiscing how, a few hours earlier, there was a glorious gathering of ---much younger ---people reveling in birthday celebrations.
A party, long overdue, on our hill the night before.
And I was thinking, was I really the oldest one there? ---when I noticed the handle of the pan sticking off the stove, right into the center of the kitchen.
It had taken two hands to lift the pan out of the oven, so my grasp was firm.
And several seconds for the pain to register in my foggy brain.
Cold packs for two hours did not stop the burning.
A flaming red palm.
White blistering began to appear.
Tired and sick to my stomach, I just had to go to bed.
But what was I to do when the cold pack warmed up?
My son brought an aloe vera leaf and there was relief...for about a minute.
Then searing pain, and the ice pack back on.
Aloe and ice for another 20 minutes.
And that was going to be my night....
Until, I thought of our honey and our Deep Muscle Rub.
Very gingerly I reapplied aloe, then even more carefully, some honey (which spread all over my palm as it warmed). And then a glob of our salve on top.
It took a few moments for the rub to soften, and I gently spread it all over the burn.
And sat there.
Waiting for the pain to start up.
But it didn't.
So I went to bed.
The next morning, no blisters.
I put on another layer of everything and went about my day....carefully.
I didn't think to wrap it.
So everything stuck to my burnt paw.
Dirt, leaves, chicken feathers, kitty fur.
I carefully washed my hand and reapplied everything.
Today, four days later, my hand shows no trace of injury or damage.
I'm in awe.