Happy Birthday Pamela Jo

BY CYNDI GREENING, ARIZONA — Another year has come and gone; it is so much easier to mark the passing time with annual events. I have a particular cluster of marking events … it begins with the holidays, continues through the Sundance Film Festival and peaks with Pamela Jo’s birthday on the last day of January. It signifies the passage of another year on our creative efforts. With the screening and distribution of THE LAND OF REFUGE, it’s been a very exciting year.

pj_africa.jpgI was chiding PJ about being slow about blogging … heck, the last one was way back during Sundance. She said, “It’s my birthday, you blog something.”

If I were Pamela Jo, I’d have taken the request and made some sort of commemorative video to celebrate her life. It would be a retrospective of her upbringing in the Bay Area, her college years as a Journalism student, her 17 years in Colonia Dublán, Mexico, having and raising her four children and, most recently, as a documentary filmmaker in Arizona. But, alas, I do not have access to those sorts of videos, so I am unable to create that sort of thing for this blog entry.

Besides, my experience of Pam is of her more recent past; in addition to her life as a wife and mother, she has added a few new roles to her repertoire. In the past three years, I have come to know her in her creative roles as a filmmaker, a screenwriter, a world traveler and a teacher. I have the unique opportunity of celebrating her life each and every day as we work on our films because, with her contribution, things get done. More than anything, I notice that she is a FORCE FOR COMPLETION. So, I guess it’s appropriate that her birthday marks each new cycle.

pjsundance09.jpgWe’ve got two new film projects we’re working on. And let me tell you, we’re both excited to be starting something new. As filmmakers, you might be surprised to know that as much as one may love a project when it begins, after spending a year with it, there comes a point when you just want it to be DONE! Toward the end of the making of THE LAND OF REFUGE, we were both so stressed out and tired, we were both almost ready to be done working … on the project AND with each other. Ironically, we were achieving our greatest success this year and we were both exhausted. Fortunately (I think), we remembered what it was that we each brought to our work and decided to create more together.

So, happy birthday, Pamela Jo!! Hope everyone remembers and celebrates you and expresses their appreciation for all that you bring to their lives … I hope this year is a tad easier for you, a bit more joyful for you, even more satisfying and rewarding!! You deserve it!!

I hope those of you who know Pamela Jo will jot a birthday message here!

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