Saturday, August 13, 2022

Farewell dear Naomi ...

My friend Naomi has left us, she died on July 30, 2022 in Los Angeles, California. Naomi Caryl Hirshhorn was 91 years old, born on June 27, 1931. I'm very sad but I'd like this post not to be somber, but to celebrate her life.
Along the years I wrote several posts about my friend Naomi - you can click on "Naomi" on the right side of my blog and see them. I explained her childhood, family, career, art and more. I visited her childhood home in Great Neck, Long Island, New York and also her home in Los Angeles in the Hollywood Hills. There are several photos of them in my previous posts. Naomi was a very special person, talented, creative, generous, fun and lovable. (Click on collage to enlarge.)
Naomi accomplished a great deal during her long life. She was a composer and lyricist and sang on Broadway when she was young. She made records and she and her music were featured in a CBS television "special" and were nominated for an Emmy. Her talent covered many areas in art, music and entertainment.
She appeared as an actress and singer on several television shows. She was also an artist, working in acrylic and pastel. Her art was exhibited in several large cities in the country. She told me she had made about 2000 drawings and 850 paintings - see example below.
A famous artist friend of hers, Morris Broderson (1928-2011) even painted a standing portrait of her.
For about ten years she had a blog where she would show photos of her succulent garden, her parties and more. Her posts were always interesting, informative and fun. She had a free spirit.
Unfortunately when she was young she suffered a terrible illness of the lungs - bronchiectasis. With the years it worsened and she had to stay indoors most of the time. But even in her confinement she enjoyed nature around her. Her house was on the Hollywood Hill, hanging out cantilever style. From her balcony she could see the city below, with an incredible view that would not quit, seeing all the way to the sea on a clear day.
She delighted in watching the birds flying to her outdoor balcony as well as the many wild animals walking in the hills below her house.
Naomi was knowledgeable in all aspects of show business. She saw many new films at home on DVD's because of her affiliation with the Screen Actors Guild (and was on the Film Nominating Committee.) On her blog she would give good critiques of the films. Along her long career she had met many well known actors, such as Paul Newman, and would share anecdotes on them. She never married but had a large circle of friends. For years she doted on her beautiful white cat "Sweetie." I did pet him, and his fur was the softest ever.
Naomi was very social and many friends and family came to her home for luncheons and parties. She would set up an attractive table with delicate china and her favorite blue crystal goblets.
Loving nature, Naomi was fond of gardens but when she no longer could visit them she would surround herself with stunning flower arrangements.
With the passing of years many of her old friends started falling ill or died. It caused her much grief. Her health deteriorated as well and she could no long type on her computer or move easily. Watching the formation of the clouds from her balcony and the colors of the sun was still a joy. She always had a great sense of humor and a sharp mind, but alas, an uncooperative body.
In 2020 I was supposed to fly to California to visit my San Francisco friend George then go down to Los Angeles to visit Naomi - COVID in the US cancelled all my plans (and George died last year.) On her telephone, Naomi would not "speak" a call back message, she would sing it "Speak to me ...and I will listen to you ..." I shall miss our long telephone conversations; now I'll cherish their memories. Rest well, my dear Naomi.
"The song is ended, but the melody lingers on..." - Irving Berlin (American composer, 1888-1989.)

21 comments:

Terra said...

I can tell by your post that your friend was definitely a joy to know, so many talents and facets to her. It is so sad to lose a friend, no matter their age, young or old. I like the photos of her shooting pool, her balcony with its view, her paintings and those gorgeous blue crystal glasses.

Elephant's Child said...

This is a truly beautiful tribute to your friend. My heart goes out to you.

Susan Heather said...

A wonderful tribute.

Arkansas Patti said...

The title of this post was heartbreaking and I entered with a heavy heart. But your post was gentle and yes--positive. I followed Naomi for many years and saw second hand what you so beautifully described. It was a joy to read her posts and attend her parties vicariously. She was always kind and thoughtful in her comments on my blog. I really missed her when she went silent in 2015.
Thank you for letting us know that she is now at peace.

Cloudia said...

What a brilliant tribute to a great friend and special person. Thank you for sharing her with us. I will remember her in my prayers

DJan said...

Gosh, what can I say that would contribute to this wonderful post about a person I would have loved to know. Thank you for this tribute and all the delightful pictures you share here. You are a talented writer and now I feel as if I knew her a little.

Jeanie said...

I loved Naomi's blog and back story, her gatherings with her Hollywood friends. I have a copy of her Spoon River Anthology CD, which is lovely and have read about her and her family in some other books. She was the first person I ever knew (and one of only two) who have the same lung disease as I do. I think she was far more isolated than I am at this point (but then I'm not living in L.A. smog, either). I was sorry she didn't reply to emails after she stopped blogging but I understand all that. I'm glad you have kept us posted. I'm very sorry at her loss, partly because of another good and lovely person leaving the world but also for your own sweet heart as her friend. Big hugs to you -- this is a wonderful tribute.

Anonymous said...

Sympathies for the passig of your beautiful friend

David said...

Vagabonde, You have done justice with your memorial to your friend Naomi. I looked on-line and discovered much of her musical work as well as her artistic creations. It is sad that she suffered with her lung issues for so long but she persevered, enjoying whatever aspects of life were available to her. Her glass was always half full. Take Care, Big Daddy Dave

Nadezda said...

Naomi had so many talents - actor, artist, gardener, critic, film buff... I must say dear Vagabonde, you're lucky to have such a friend over the years. I remember your post about Naomi where you described her life.
My condolences, dear.

Shammickite said...

You have written a beautiful tribute to Naomi. I followed her blog for a long time, and we exchanged letters ..... I still have the mail she sent me. And I sent her a stained glass ornament that I made.
What an interesting lady she was. And what an extraordinary life... she knew so many of the "rich and famous"... she even met Picasso! Her writings on her blog and her descriptions of her lovely home were fascinating. I felt as if I had been a guest at one of her lunch parties!
Goodbye Naomi. Go well.

Jenn Jilks said...

This is a loving tribute. What an amazing lady!

Joared said...

I am so sorry to read of Naomi's death. So difficult to lose our friends as we grow older, so my sympathies to you. This is a lovely tribute to her with the photos and what you've written.

I so enjoyed her photos, descriptions of the wildlife visiting her garden and discussing the cacti growing there, their blossoming. I appreciated her writing of her family, her theatrical experiences, activities in which she engaged, subsequent movie reviews.

I came across her blog rather late in her blogging career but enjoyed it very much. We exchanged a few offline emails. She invited me to visit her at one point but my life was such at the time I was unable to accept her invitation. Later, when I was able to do so her circumstances had changed so my visit was no longer possible. Eventually, she ceased blogging which was disappointing. I remember with pleasure the delight in reading her blog. She is truly missed now.

Kitchen Riffs said...

What a lovely (and loving) tribute to your friend! SO sorry for your loss, but Naomi will always live on in your heart. My condolences.

Vicki Lane said...

May her memory be a blessing! Thank you for sharing this wonderful recollection. Was he blog The Old Old Woman of the Hills?

Snowbrush said...

She sounds like a lovely person, and I'm so sorry for your loss. At least she made it what might be called "a ripe old age," although no age would have been old enough to mitigate one's grief. I quite enjoyed what I saw of her art.

Dee said...

Dear Vagabonde, thank you for sharing with us your friend Naomi. From the comments, it's clear that all those who read her blog admired her deeply. Not just her creativity, but her very being. As I read your tender eulogy, I felt as if I was coming to know a person, whose essence was Joy.

She seems to me to have been the embodiment of "When you look for good, you will find it." From your words, it's clear she looked and saw and absorbed and shared and gave back to all the joy she took in being alive. Thank you for your gentle words. Peace.

Arti said...

VB, I’m so sorry for your loss of such a beautiful and talented friend. You have written a marvelous tribute on her and made me wish I too could have the privilege of knowing her. You had been blessed surely by being her friend for all those years. Thank you for sharing your thoughts.

Lowcarb team member said...

A wonderful tribute.

All the best Jan

Jenny Woolf said...

What a fascinating, likeable person Naomi sounds, and what a glamorous life she had. It looks full of colour and charm. You've written a wonderful tribute to her.

Kanani said...

Thank you for writing this and letting us all know. Her memories are an important part of history, from reminiscing about her mother and her famous father, to the inroads she made in NY and Hollywood. I enjoyed your recollections every bit as much as I her blog.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...