This morning I set out for my first day on set. I wanted to be on time. After all, I'd flown across the Atlantic, said goodbye to my husband and two children and carted along two babies all for this. I studied the maps, preprogramed the GPS, looked over the route several times. And I'd spent the last 3 days driving as much as possible so I'd be acclimated to driving on the left side of the road (and right side of the car). I couldn't leave too early. Given that my babies don't go down until 10 pm and are up for long stretches during the night (just a nap, if you don't mind, thanks, mum, now we're quite chipper) I needed to try and sleep as long as possible. My GPS said it would take 30 minutes, so I left at 7:30 am, to be there by 8 am.
I wish I could see a map showing the route I took. It should at least be good for a laugh. I tried to follow the instructions from the chirpy British lady, I really tried. I took the turns I thought she wanted. About 25 times during the trip, I got that "recalculating." When I was about 10 minutes away, I took a turn, and it changed to 30 minutes. I got 10 minutes away again, took a turn, and it jumped back up to 30 again. And again. And again. And again. I swear someone was just screwing with me. Somewhere someone hacked into my GPS and just sent me in loop after loop. It was like being caught in an episode of the Twilight Zone. The farther I drove, the farther away I was. I tried to laugh. I tried crying. I sang hymns to lower my blood pressure. Sometimes it worked. There were moments when I almost believed I'd entered some version of hell and would never get off the freeway. I wondered if God was trying to teach me some metaphor about my life. There had to be a reason for this insanity!
TWO AND A HALF hours later, I arrived.
It was worth it.
I got to meet crew, chat with the production designer, the line producer, the UPM, Stephenie, and other cool crew members. (This crew ROCKS!) I sat in a chair (it wasn't mine, but I got to use it anyway), put on headphones, and watched characters I invented speak lines I wrote. I laughed out loud at one point at the way Keri delivered a line and will have to be very careful in the future or they'll ban that unprofessional writer from the set! But it'll be hard because it's funny, and these actors are so great. Molly (Jane's best friend) is played by the gorgeous and so funny Ayda Field. Oh you guys, I'm so excited! Can I freak out a little? Can I just get majorly giddy and excited and squeal and jump around? I mean, as long as they're not filming a scene and I'm far from set. Because I'm a professional crew member and never make a peep.
I haven't met any of the actors yet, and who knows, I may not. I don't want to bug anyone. I caught a glimpse of Keri Russell and Bret Mackenzie.
Oh and guess what? I HAVE MY OWN TRAILER!!! It's actually a third of a trailer, but it's MINE! This is a thing I never imagined in my wildest dreams. Maybe that's a silly thing to freak out about, but when they told me, I almost started to cry. It has a little desk and a love seat (a casting couch, if you will) and a little toilet, and maybe someday I can bring my babies on set and they could take a nap in there. I'm in heaven, y'all! After two and a half hours circling in hell, I'm in heaven.
As I wrote that, a very handsome production assistant (who has the most charming, deep British-accented voice) just handed me a binder of schedule, script, etc, and said "It has all the bits and bobs in it." I could die right now.
As I write this, I'm aware that someone will be offended by this post, because someone always is offended by every post. I don't mean to sound braggy. I know how unusual this situation is, how lucky I am. And I think I would be ungrateful not to enjoy every moment, every bit and bob. And so I shall, mates. So I shall.