I honestly had no intention of having any celebrity encounters during my trip to Guatemala. But as usual, God, the fates, or my personal Guardian Angel had a mind of its own. On Saturday morning March 28, Jimmy took me to LAX right after breakfast where I was meeting Bob as we embarked on our Guatemala trip. Bob had thought that since it was an international flight, we should be there about three hours early. I thought that this might have been a bit earlier than necessary, but I certainly didn’t want to risk being left behind.
I met up with Bob as we were getting our boarding passes and we headed toward our terminal. As we were passing through security, I noticed that a man had been pulled aside to be ‘wanded’ down by security and when he asked why, they told him that it was because he was wearing a bulky sweater. As my eyes traveled from the sweater in question to the man’s face, I noticed that it was none other than Mr. Spock himself, Leonard Nimoy.
I am not what one would consider a ‘Trekkie’, but I have always enjoyed the Star Trek films and have just recently been exploring the Star Trek original TV series. Still my first natural thought was that I must simply get a picture with him! Oddly, this was my second ‘chance’ encounter with a Star Trek cast member, having met George “Sulu” Takei in 1997.
As if the unlikely encounter and the perfect timing hadn’t been enough of an omen, Bob had helped Nimoy’s wife with her luggage when he saw that her husband was ‘tied up’. As soon as Bob realized that she was talking to him, he told the wife that I was a big fan and inquired as to whether she thought he would mind posing for a picture. She responded “well, let’s see what kind of a mood he’s in after this.”
Somehow, he was in a great mood. Bob and I stood off to the side, while Mrs. Nimoy made the plea to her husband. A few seconds later Leonard Nimoy approached us with a friendly smile and shook my hand. I told him with a laugh that it hadn’t been fair to search him (in my head recalling the Search for Spock, tee hee). He was in a good humor as he posed with me and then Bob. Not having anything proper for him to sign, I didn’t bother with an autograph.
We had arrived incredibly early so we had a long wait. While hanging out near our gate, we saw the Nimoys pass us again. This time he had a baseball cap pulled over his head probably discouraging further attention. Live long and prosper, Mr. Spock. I’m very pleased to have met you.
Return to the journey to Guatemala…