If Jordena Green were alive, she would be celebrating her 100th birthday tomorrow. She might have celebrated by taking a first-class trip around the world--but only if she bought some new suitcases. That's because I bought her old, well-traveled suitcases about 25 years ago when I lived in San Francisco. Jordena also lived in San Francisco and she did not travel light. One suitcase is almost large enough to fit a grown person. Another one is just a little larger than a normal modern suitcase. And then there's the special vanity case. I suspect there was also a wardrobe case that ended up somewhere else.
All the cases are covered with hotel labels from her various travels. Jordena traveled frequently and only stayed at the finest hotels.
Jordena stayed at the world's finest hotels, including Frank Lloyd Wright's Imperial Hotel.
Royal Hawaiian Hotel
Hotel Ritz in Madrid looks well maintained and offers rooms from $421 to $5,964 per night. The Hotel Quisana Capri also offers rooms starting at about $430 per night.
It appears that Jordena began her travels in the 1930s when she was single and in her 20s, although the trips continued after she married. That's when she bought these monogrammed Hartmann Skymate suitcases with the pink satin lining. Even after all of these years, the scent of her perfume in the suitcases is quite strong, but very pleasant. A friend assured me that the scent is White Shoulders, but I certainly wouldn't know.
On August 17th 1935, she boarded the SS Malolo, bound for Hawaii. She returned home to Los Angeles on the SS Lurline on October 5th. A nice long trip. Two months later, she sailed back to Hawaii on the SS Mariposa and didn't return until the end of February, 1936. It appears that she also made trips by airplane, as evidenced by airline stickers on the cases form Iberia Airlines, British European Airways, and Pacific Northern Airlines. It's clear from the labels that she visited several cities numerous times, staying in different luxury hotels.
Here are some additional images of the suitcase labels.
I never met Jordena. I guess I probably assumed that she had died and that's why the suitcases were for sale. It turns out that she didn't die until 2001. If only I had done this research a little earlier, I could have just called her up and asked her about her travels and her (ahem) family history. I'm not sure why it is that I've become curious enough to research it now, but I can tell you that there's something a little odd here, an intriguing mystery to say the least. Tune in tomorrow for more details on the mysterious life of Jordena F. Green.