I stumbled into the quaint New England town of Stars Hollow in the fall of 2000. After my friend Mark called me up and said there was a fast-talking, quick-witted new TV show on that he thought I would like. And he was right. I started tuning to “Gilmore Girls” every week and fell more and more in love with the Lorelei’s and all the characters that surrounded them.
When the show settled in on its regular Tuesday night spot—in the era before smart phones and “always connected”—my land line and my door buzzer went unanswered from 7 to 8 pm (Central time) every week.
I started dating Ken during the second half of the first season. And at first he didn’t appreciate it’s New England, fast-talking, pop-culture-referencing dialogue. He was more interested in why wasn’t I free on Tuesday evenings? Because I had to watch what my girls and their charming host of neighbors were doing in Stars Hollow! That’s what!
Much like Lorelei and Rory, I, too, was living in a magical, charming place. <cue the animated birds and forest creatures>. I lived in an enormous third floor walk up in Ravenswood. I had a close circle of great friends (still do.) And I was in love.
“Gilmore Girls” was an intelligent show–about relationships, both complicated and simple. It catapulted pop culture references directly at you and whether you caught them or missed them, it didn’t matter. Another one was coming right at you. And slowly, but surely, Ken fell in love with it. He was charmed by the bouquet of characters Stars Hollow offered. By the time the third season started, we’d move to LA and we’re living in my brother- and sister-in-law’s guest house. Small, charming and quaint—like Stars Hollow, it was our first home together. And usually without fail, we were stationed in front of the TV on Tuesday evenings, watching GG.
Long before “Gilmore Girls” came to Netflix, we’d purchased every season on DVD. Many of them, we got at the company store on The Warner Bros. lot where my brother-in-law worked. It was there, where I went to Stars Hollow–though have been unable to find any of the photos.
When Ken was diagnosed with cancer in 2009, it was Stars Hollow I escaped to via my laptop while sitting next to him in the Infusion Room at the Cancer Center while he slept or watched his favorite movie during treatment. A child of television, it’s always been where I know I can escape to when I need to turn off my brain.
Stars Hollow remains a place I still escape to. (And for the record, I’m a fan of the Netflix revival.)
Also published on Medium.