i should backtrack a bit first. so the old lady had seen nick jonas post something interesting on his instagram account a few days earlier. he'd been working on a collaboration with a line of unisex shoes, and the official release was going to be at nordstrom at the grove out in l.a. she called the store to find out the details and learned that those who pre-bought a pair would be given a wristband and a spot in line to meet nick and have him sign the shoes. and the stars just happened to align in such a way that had her available that evening to head out there with her special friend. they could grab the shoes, have a nice dinner, enjoy a rare weeknight out together. done and done.
before we got on the road, we decided to indulge in a little treat:
the molten chocolate latte was really good, by the way. gotta love those special limited edition starbucks flavors.
it was a pretty easy drive to the grove, but the moment we pulled into the parking structure we knew we were in for it. a quick glance at the sign at the entrance told us that there were a shitton of people in there, with just a few spots showing available on each floor. the top floor seemed to be our best bet, with over a hundred spaces open, so we made our way up there only to find that the top level is for employees only. WOMP WOMP. and so we circled back around and down to one of the lower levels and found ourselves sitting here for longer than we'd ever imagined possible.
it was incredibly frustrating, and we started talking each other through it, bracing ourselves for the very strong possibility that we would just return the shoes and completely miss the meet & greet. it was already 1:45, and the event was supposed to go from 2:00-4:00. crap.
after circling several times, we finally scored a pretty decent spot that was just a few feet away from the elevators. and so we grabbed the bag of shoes from the trunk, woke up the napping bean in the back seat, and made our way towards nordstrom. being a saturday on the weekend before valentine's day, the grove was extra crowded. and when we finally got to the store, there was a nice long line that snaked from about the middle of the store all the way out to the door. we checked in with an employee, who checked our receipt to verify that the shoes had been pre-purchased and then handed us tickets and directed us outside.
while that line didn't look too bad when it stopped at the door, it turned out that it was just chopped off to avoid blocking the entrance to the store. the rest of the line actually snaked around the building, and we found the end of it here:
we'd overheard people saying that he was going to stay for the first two hundred people in line, and a glance at our tickets told me that the parking snafu hadn't hurt us after all.
the bean was pretty excited to get to meet nick again. we'd told her that she's met him before, but she was only 3 back then and didn't remember it at all. she spent most of the time we waited in line sitting here:
we sent the bean into the store once to check things out around 2:30, and she took this to show us that he hadn't gotten there yet.
time moves pretty slowly when you're in line, and especially when what you're waiting for doesn't actually arrive until an hour into the scheduled event time. yup, that nick didn't get there till about 3, which was really rather excruciating. but once he was there, the line finally started moving...about 10 people at a time. and when we got near the door, we caught a glimpse of the growing standby line of folks who were hoping to get in on the nick action after the ticketholders got through.
yay, finally inside the store!
these are a few of the shoes designed by nick, as well as other shoes by creative recreation, the line he collaborated with.
behind the dj was a promo video highlighting the entire collection, plus random shots of nick.
look, there he is!
we'd already been told that once we got to the front of the line, we would hand our belongings over to an employee who would hold them while we had our brief shining moment with the man of the hour. the bean was bummed to hear this, because she wanted to show nick the picture we'd taken way back in 2011, when we randomly met him in texas, and the picture was on my phone. WOMP WOMP.
here's the signed shoe! we had him sign it inside because we figured the ink might wear off of the leather on the outside.
and then we found ourselves in another incredibly long line to get our photo. rather than emailing us a link to a website to get it, we had to wait to have it printed out for us. ugh.
at least we got to check out some shoes as we waited. like these beauties by gucci...spice girls, anyone?
and these super fun, super sparkly boots by j-lo.
the bean decided to go have a seat and made a friend.
not long after that, the clock struck 4 and we caught a glimpse of nick as he was whisked away. he'd only been there for an hour, and i wondered if everyone in line had gotten their shot at their meet & greet. that standby line for sure didn't get any nick love. that kind of sucked...i'm sure people had waited for a long time, so hopefully everyone who had a ticket got through. since it was grammy weekend, he had to have quite a packed schedule, and all of the people standing around had to be a major disruption for the store.
after we'd been in line for about half an hour without much movement, staffers started coming by with printed photos to try and locate their owners. the old lady overheard one of them mutter "next time we do this, we need to just do digital photos." well, duh. most people don't even want a printed photo anyway...just something they can share on social media! and a few minutes later, they started handing out little slips of paper with a website to download the photos from. along with what was probably the entire line of people, we hopped onto our phones to make sure we could find our picture before we left. all that activity slowed down everyone's connection, and we actually got handed our printed photo before we found them online. in any case, here's our money shot(s):
and here's the photos from the last time. everyone looks so different now:
i'm not gonna lie...totally worth the wait. heh.
this was our next stop (of course, with another line to stand in):
just the sight of the green exterior and gold lettering brought back all sorts of great memories from our trip to europe...almost four years ago. they have a cafe for afternoon tea and treats - part of it is outside:
there's also a seating area inside, upstairs above the macaron and pastries counter.
it's all so pretty in there, although much smaller than the ones we got to visit in europe.
you want a fun box designed by jimmy choo for laduree? only $85, and you get 15 whole macarons inside!
we went for the pink box, of course, and each chose two flavors. the bean went with salted caramel and chocolate, the old lady chose the jimmy choo flavor (champagne with berries) and coffee, and i took a salted caramel for myself and picked a lemon one for the hub.
after all that waiting around, i took the bean to the american girl to pick up something for her doll.
the fountain was doing its thing as we headed back towards the parking structure:
and then we made one last stop before we left.
pretty successful day at the grove, i'd say. and it'd been a while since we'd gone on an adventure like this. so thanks, nick jonas. i'm sure it was great seeing us again too.