Grammy winner Judith Hill's name is going on my list of Prince confidantes who should've stuck to him like glue after the emergency stop in Moline, Ill.
Hill told the New York Times that she was on that private plane having dinner with Prince when his eyes became fixed and he lost consciousness. Prince and other members of his small entourage were flying from Atlanta to Minneapolis when Prince had to be "revived on the tarmac with a shot of Narcan, which is typically used to treat opioid overdoses. Eighteen minutes after landing, the ambulance took him to nearby Trinity Moline Hospital," reads the NYT.
In an especially haunting revelation, Hill told the NYT that Prince told her I had to fight for my life. I remember hearing your voices from afar and saying to myself, Follow the voices, follow the voices, get back in your body, you gotta do this. And he said it was the hardest thing he'd ever done, to get back into his body like that.
Hill declined to tell the NYT if she and Prince shared a romance, instead saying, "There was a very intense relationship. I deeply cared for him." Not long before he died, she said, "He told me that he loved me and that he would always be there for me. I was with Prince the last two years of my life."
If Judith and Prince were that close, then Prince fan Cheri Bosch has some questions.
"Why didn't she keep him in the hospital? Why was he all by himself that night? That I don't understand," said Bosch. "They all knew he had a problem, so you wait to the last minute to get him help? A day late and a dollar short, don't you think?"
Flying high with Prince
I ran into Cheri Bosch at the newest stop for Prince fans, the Chanhassen Cinema mural by Australian artist Mr. G.
Figuring the area would be mobbed Wednesday night during the official christening of the artwork, Bosch came out early, as did a constant stream of fans.
Bosch had personal interactions with Prince that were not much appreciated by his bodyguards.
"I used to have Prince on my flight all the time because I flew for Northwest," said Bosch, who retired after 39 years. "He'd be the last one on and the first one off. I think I ticked off a couple of his bodyguards. One of the times, he was sitting there and I said, 'Would you care for such and such?' and his bodyguard looks at me and goes, He'll have … and I said, 'No. He'll speak for himself, thank you.' Then he was looking at fashion magazines and eating a Reese's Peanut Butter Cup and I said, 'Oh, my God, that is one of my favorite candy bars in the world.' When he got off he had piled all his fashion magazines in his seat and inside one of them was a Reese's Peanut Butter Cup.
"Another time he was on with his second wife [Manuela Testolini] going to London and the bodyguard came up and said, I do all the talking for Prince, and I said, 'No, you don't. All my passengers are equal.' I talked to him and his wife and they were so much fun. He was a neat person."
Move over, teapot water tower
Boston-based muralist and art teacher MV has mostly completed a townscape of Lindström, and she didn't forget the umlauts.
"A bunch of my customers reminded her not to forget them," said Bernie Coulombe, owner of Lindstrom Bakery, the site of the painting. "And then they were complaining because she didn't put them on the old train depot. I said, 'Oh, no, no, no, no. [Umlauts] weren't popular way back then.' "
MV, aka Mary Veronica Sweeney, who signs her work "in my Gaelic name," (which I'd only get wrong), said she wanted to depict content immigrants. "My dream was to make it look like the moment some of the immigrants arrived … to the beautiful landscape in Minnesota; they are beholding the beauty, the promise and abundance. In our history there are so many paintings of immigrants leaving and they are sad."
"I think it's awesome. It's going to definitely promote the town," said Coulombe, who worked with the city to find a grant to pay MV. The distinctive teapot water tower has to share the scene with her exquisite bakery, and that seems to tickle Coulombe. "You go back, the water tower shows over my building."
On Aug. 6 the mural will be celebrated. Coulombe has a jar in her bakery to collect enough to cover MV's $668 airfare; only $372 to go. "We're going to get her back here," said Coulombe.
See the video for a clue about my favorite cookie.