The Dream That Changed Everything (Part three)
We were wrapping for the day. The time was late in the afternoon, for the bright sunshine and long crisp shadows were everywhere. The lake, that was normally a murky dark gray-green, was as azure as the Caribbean Sea, and rippled in a benign dance in the soft, warm breeze. We had boarded our limousines and were being taken back to the main lot, when Gary Vinson asked the driver to stop. He looked at me and said, “Sharon, I think you and I should walk back, it is such a perfect day.” He and I got out of the limo and walked over to the lake’s edge. The lush green grass was a thick carpet to the waters edge. A small spit of land jetted out into the lake, and at the end was a bright green tree, small but tall enough for us to walk under its boughs. The broad lush leaves rustle in a melodic tune, and Gary and I sat down beneath the spreading branches. We just sat mesmerized, leaning toward one another. His hand touching mine and I slowly looked up into his eyes. He stood, and helped me up, and I’ve looked into his compassionate eyes. Gary was tall he touched me beneath the chin, and lifted my face and tenderly kissed me. Then without a word spoken, we walked along the water’s edge, as the sun began to set behind the hills.
That was all there was to my dream, but the entire weekend I felt so lighthearted and vivacious. May I add, I did not wish to see my fiancée, and made every excuse to cut short our Saturday night date, and was back home within the hour. Again, I was preoccupied thinking of my inamorato in my treasure-of-a-dream. Mother and I talked at great length about Gary. She was always such a good sport, sharing her thoughts, and lent support to my hopes and dreams. We were good friends.
Monday couldn’t come soon enough for me, and I spent a lot more time on my coiffeur and putting on more makeup than usual. Everything just had to be perfect. Of course, I couldn’t change anything, but I did my best to make it better. I drove the short drive to work singing like a lark. I felt fantastic, and looked forward to a grand day.
Working on McHale’s Navy never made me feel like this before, even though it was a pleasant show to work, and Hollingsworth Morse always made sure I got a silent bit. Anytime you were in contact with the principal character it was automatic that you got a ‘silent.’ Even though some first assistant directors would try to dispute it, attempting to get away with such shenanigans so as to keep the show under budget. Perhaps they felt they would be rewarded by the producers. Extras learn quickly the tricks of the wily assistant directors. If we felt that we were being cheated out of our dues, we simply had to sign our vouchers and add the word protest, and a union rep would come and view the dailies, and if it was in our favor, the check would come in the mail, and the right amount would be there.
This was never the case on McHale’s, they were always fair, at least I never heard of anyone getting the shaft. I arrived at the parking lot, and started the rather long walk to the soundstage. I had left five days before, never thinking I would be returning with a crush on Gary Vinson. You could say I was truly carrying a king size torch for the darling man all because of a dream. I know my feet never touched the ground as I stopped by the casting office to pick up my daily voucher. Carl and Mike both noted that I look quite serene and full of life. “Yes, I certainly am today, thank you for noticing,” I said, and moved like Pavlova to the set. I spoke cheerfully to everyone along the way, with plenty of good mornings and waving as if I were Rose Queen in the New Year’s Day Tournament of Roses Parade, pick any year!
Just before I opened the big sound-stage door I quickly primped hoping not to be seen especially by my new interest. I entered the set, and I cannot explain the way I was feeling, but suffice it to say, exhilarated. Gary was nowhere around, but then neither was any of the rest of the cast. I undoubtedly was a bit early that day, as was duly noted by the crew members. But by the time I had my cup of mocha Java, the rest of the cast was beginning to come in. I forgot to mention that, I was on a silent bit, and the two carry over checks reflected that pay as well. Ah, laughing all the way to the bank, as if I weren’t in high spirits enough.
I was on the set and on my mark when entered my hero. My heart skipped a few beats, and then I felt my face flush to crimson. Try, though I may, I couldn’t take my eyes off of him. There he was, the man that so filled my dream and so preoccupied my weekend. I was transfixed, his eyes caught mine, and he quickly said, “Hi hon!” My hand came up to my chest, and I quickly drew a deep breath, and breathlessly uttered, “good morning.” I sounded as though I was doing an impersonation of Marilyn Monroe.
(Continued next month)