Is your head still spinning from last week’s episode? Mine is from reliving it, and it happened six months ago. Not to mention we shot the reunion special yesterday but that’s another matter. Let’s go back to St. John in the US Verging on Crazy Islands.
Kelly and Jill seemed to have become very close this year, so after she broke down at dinner, Ramona called Jill to warn her that Kelly needed a friend, wasn’t making sense with us and perhaps Jill could reach out to her. Kelly had been asked to leave, and we all hoped that Jill might meet her in NY, and be a friend to her – help her decompress. Jill didn’t believe Ramona was serious, so Bethenny grabbed the phone to say something to the effect of “this is nothing to do with you and me but you must take this seriously – it isn’t a joke.” They hung up and we went to bed. At no time on the phone that night did Jill give any indication that she’d be showing up the next day.
Jill doesn’t like being ambushed. Cast your mind back - she said she was ambushed when Bethenny called her, and when Ramona tried to organize a summit at her apartment. What do you call her showing up in St. John? She breezed in as though it was no big deal and they were stopping by on their way to St. Barths. There is no airport on St. John – they had to fly to St. Thomas and take a boat to get to us. She said she wanted to see Bethenny before the holidays. At that time and for the previous two and a half months of filming, she lived a block away from Bethenny in Manhattan – a three minute walk.
When Jill arrived, she shouted out Ramona’s name, said hello to Bethenny and kissed Sonja. Me? She completely ignored me. Each time she glanced in my direction she shot daggers at me – it made me start to hyperventilate and nearly shut down. I shot a few daggers back at her myself, because I couldn’t believe that she waltzed in so cavalierly and refused to even acknowledge I was there. She also pretended that the phone call the night before never happened.
We had all reorganized our lives for a week to take this trip. When we planned it, Jill told everyone for various reasons that we shouldn’t go. To me in particular (before we stopped speaking) she had said, “I am planning my own trip and you all should go with me; don’t go on Ramona’s trip.” When it became clear that we were all going, she decided she couldn’t get away and I for one was relieved.
If Jill wanted to see Bethenny she could have done that in New York. If she wanted to make a grand gesture of apology to Bethenny she could have said that to begin with, maybe come in on bended knee with hearts and flowers and perhaps riding a horse with some skywriting behind her. She didn’t do any of that. She came in saying "I came to surprise you, Ramona." Guess what, if there’s one thing I know about Ramona it’s that she doesn’t like surprises. And she brought Bobby. Does Jill not remember how upset Ramona got when Simon came to dinner almost three years ago? That night, Ramona left! Little wonder she wasn’t pleased to see Jill unannounced, with Bobby in tow. If she had come in humble instead of screaming “surprise” with an aggressive sense of entitlement, no one would have kicked her out. I’d have left and gone to a restaurant, taking with me whomever didn’t want to see Jill. Let’s go one further – if she had looked at me and said, "Alex, let’s talk," I would have heard her out. She did not do that.
After she left, Jill complained that I "butted my nose into her business." How is her showing up unannounced in St. John my fault? Oh, right, it isn’t. What exactly was her business? Personally I think her business was to get herself on camera and see what we were up to because she couldn’t stand being out of the loop.
One other thing I’m going to say about all that – although we went to St. John in November, we shot some of the confessional interviews in April. And, I think by then Jill had begun to realize how badly she had behaved and tried to spin doctor herself in the confessionals. To me, her efforts came off more as an attempt to repair her reputation than genuine remorse.
After all the drama and nonsense ended, we managed to have a great rest of the trip. It was my turn to do something for Ramona and the group and I organized a lobster dinner – I enlisted Sonja to help me carry the lobsters up from the beach which was hysterical, and threw the ladies a bridal shower. We all had a merry old time gassing about boys and sex, and then Ramona choked. We all leapt to our feet to help her, and she quickly rallied. I brought the girls some amazing goodies from Laila Lee and we giggled some more; loved it that Sonja gave Ramona a demonstration of how to use my present! We did the toilet paper bridal gown mini-challenge (with lots of pinot grigio,) declared a tie and after more laughing and hugging we left the next day.
Back in NY, Kelly met the others to tell them what happened and I was amazed to see this scene, as that wasn’t the trip I went on. Luckily everyone had the presence of mind to disagree with Kelly that in fact they all knew people who’d hired Bethenny as a chef. When she said that Bethenny admitted to her that she orchestrated a smear campaign against her, I realized more than ever that Kelly truly does go to another planet sometimes. We say "A" and she hears "B." I don’t know how you fix that.
At Sonja’s party, I couldn’t believe that LuAnn called us all upstairs, away from the party, so that Jen and she could hear "our side of the story." Who was she channeling, the Godfather? I thought it was supposed to be an art show, not a side show. After a few minutes of conversation, Sonja tried to pull everyone downstairs and Simon and I went with her. We heard a great tenor sing from the Barber of Seville. (I have to admit, I stopped mouthing the words when the camera started filming Sonja and me because I didn’t want people to think I was too terribly pretentious – hahahahahahaha!)
Jill threw a skating party, and decided to call Bethenny and ask her to meet the following week. Kelly and Ramona arrived at the rink and Kelly gave her version of the St. John events to Ramona. It’s one thing to rewrite history to someone who wasn’t there, but it doesn’t always work so well when you try that with someone who was on the trip with you. Ramona knows. Then Jill came up to her and tried to tell Ramona her version of her entrance to the villa in St. John. Once again, it was different from what actually happened. Don’t mess with Ramona. Ramona knows.
There’s more to come, and you won’t believe what happened at the reunion. Till then, enjoy Memorial Day weekend, and if you’re in Chicago June 3-6, please come and see us at our book signings!! Go to our family website for bookstores and times, and if you can’t make it to those or any of our upcoming dates, it’s also available on Kindle now and we love how the tech-savvy Bravo audience are lapping up e-versions (more to come!)
Hey, one more thing – tomorrow, Friday the 28th, is Simon’s and my tenth wedding anniversary! Ten years, two beautiful kids and I love him more now if that’s even possible. Simon, I love you and I look forward to the next twenty....