When I arrived, more than 500 individuals have been waiting for a chance to meet the 46-calendar year-outdated attractiveness icon. To her legions of enthusiasts — typically gals of a selected age — she was a type of feminist hero, a girl who experienced succeeded in company on her individual soon after obtaining dumped by her loaded husband.
Some followers wondered why a New Yorker as glamorous as she would bother coming to Anchorage, better identified for its quick entry to outdoor adventures than for manner.
“She’s so nicely-groomed, and Alaskans are not,” 1 lady instructed me, including that she was so psyched about conference Ivana that she anxious she may faint.
I scanned the line for anyone to tactic.
And which is when I 1st noticed the lady who would later on turn out to be a feeling in Republican politics, internationally renowned as a proper-wing firebrand. Again then, she was just a woman in line to meet up with a celeb. She was bright-eyed and enthusiastic. I really do not keep in mind how she was dressed, but it wasn’t the edgy librarian appear she turned well known for.
A thing about her made me consider she would give me a excellent quotation.
She stated she experienced advised her spouse, Todd, that she’d driven to Anchorage to shop at Costco. In its place, she headed straight for Ivana.
“We want to see Ivana,” she explained, “because we are so determined in Alaska for any semblance of glamour and culture.”
She explained she was a commercial fisherman and that her name was Sarah Palin. She confided that she smells like salmon for a massive section of the summer months.
And this is what I wanted for my tale — a nobody who smelled like fish vying for a glimpse of the celeb whose hair was coiffed in a bouffant French twist. (I did not know at the time she was serving on the Wasilla city council. She would run for mayor later on that calendar year and get.)
Ivana sat at a table in the store’s cosmetics department, sporting a light-coloured pantsuit and pink fingernail polish. She gracefully signed autographs, pitched her perfume and in no way stopped smiling. She experienced now frequented 40 J.C. Penney suppliers and planned to go to 20 far more.
As I wrote back again in 1996, Ivana had turn into wealthy the previous-fashioned way, by marrying a abundant guy. Now, she was making an attempt on her new role as a feminist heroine.
“I really don’t know what I am,” she advised me, speaking softly and bit by bit with a pronounced Czech accent. “What I know is that my upbringing was normally that the gentleman was the head of the loved ones. But this is old instances. Now what I believe that is that I’m definitely equal.”
Her new partner, Italian businessman Riccardo Mazzucchelli, stood a several ft away all through the full two-hour function. When it was over, the couple rushed out of the section shop and headed to the airport, exactly where a helicopter was ready to take them on a sightseeing flight to Mount McKinley (now called Denali).
Prior to they remaining, I asked Ivana if she took her new husband’s title.
”No,’’ her partner interjected. “She does not have a final title. It is Ivana. Just Ivana.”