Opening The Vault: Part Nineteen

When you’re in the throes of new love, you feel like you always have something to look forward to. This was never more true than during the summer of 1994, a couple of months into my involvement with California native Mark (a.k.a Sparky).

As I struggled with adjusting to life back in New York after my junior year in London and a local beau who didn’t exactly light my fire, Sparky provided a much-needed distraction. And my excitement about him grew once I made plans to go visit him in L.A. I now Open The Vault and take you back to the summer of ‘94…

New York, NY
August 13th, 1994

Today, I went out to take care of two Sparky-related errands.

I stopped at Tiffany’s, to get him a beautiful sterling silver golf-themed key ring — no doubt, the most extravagant item I’ve ever purchased for a man But I figure, between the diamond band he gave me, the bi-coastal phone calls on his bill, and everything else, Sparky deserves a little bauble!

Tiffany & Co: During the summer of ’94, I stopped in the famed luxe retailer’s flagship Fifth Avenue store to pick up a little something for Sparky

Next, I went into Victoria’s Secret to try and find a pretty nightgown. No such luck. Unless you have a figure like Cindy Crawford, it is very difficult to find the kind of flattering lingerie I’m looking for (floor-length and silky, but with sleeves to hide my flabby arms).

* * *

August 14th, 1994

Organized some of my London mementos today. As I glanced at various ticket stubs and notes from my Commonwealth Hall buddies, I found myself saddened that these items, along with my diaries and photos, are all that remains of the most incredible experience of my life..

Later, I headed down to [my college roommate and friend] Li-Shean’s abode. Chatted with her summer roommate and another Mount Holyoke senior. A couple of Coors Lights had us pleasantly buzzed.

I called to check my messages and just as I hoped, Sparky had called.

“I love you,” he said on my voice mail. “And I can’t wait till you get here. Hope everything is wonderful, Bye.”

He’s so wonderful.

* * *

August 18th, 1994

I spoke to my sweetheart last night. We’ve spoken every night so far this week! It still amazes me that Sparky is so besotted. I never thought I would affect a man so deeply at this stage of my life, at least not one whose feelings I would reciprocate. Lord knows I’ve had my share of over ardent guys I felt no attraction for.

Yes — I am ridiculously excited about our pending reunion.

* * *

As I anticipated my first visit to California to see Sparky, I couldn’t wait to finally be with him in his world. I had no idea that my inaugural West Coast jaunt would introduce me to one of the greatest obstacles in our way — his job.

Coming up….an exhilarating night out with a visiting former colleague and a review of Frank Langella’s mesmerizing Broadway performance.

Category: Frank Langella, junior year abroad, London, long-distance relationships, Mount Holyoke, new love, Tiffany and Co Comment »


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