Glorious Broad #6: Patrice Wynne

Photos by Sarah Kjelleren

Photos by Sarah Kjelleren

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GLORIOUS PROFESSION: Entrepreneur. Owner/Creator at Abrazos. Writer

GLORIOUS PERSONA: A Free, Gutsy, Jubilant Glorious Broad

GLORIOUS QUALITIES: Wise, Sensuous, Joyful, Exuberant


GLORIOUS FACT: At 60, Patrice created a list called “104 Qualities I Want in a Partner.” Friends told her "The chances of finding a man with these qualities are the same as finding a unicorn."  Two months later, she met that “Unicorn.” Six weeks later, he proposed. Like Lola, whatever Patrice wants, Patrice gets…

GLORIOUS PHILOSOPHY: “I have an internal message system now: I’m running out of decades,  I’m running out of decades. It’s pushing me to create more, dare more.” 

GB: I got to know Patrice — theoretically — over cafecito with her man, Ernesto, in Mexico. He rhapsodized about the woman: He respects her, loves her, protects her, delights in her but understands that she needs her freedom — and he lets her fly. They shared a grown up sexy love. I needed to get to know this lady as I met her briefly at a café in San Miguel. She was like a bolt of lightning aimed at me — her force, style and energy were palpable. I followed up with a visit to her boutique. Now, I am not a shopper, yet I walked out with armfuls of aprons, shirts and, well, stuff I didn’t know I “needed.” The woman has talent. We stayed in touch and became friends during her visits to New York. She loves New York as she loves so many things — with exuberance, curiosity and an urge to MAKE STUFF HAPPEN. A dinner date with the Glorious Broad Patrice Wynne featured plenty of guffawing at an outdoor café in the West Village …

A BON VIVANT — MEXICAN STYLE...

WHEN YOU WERE YOUNGER, DID YOU IMAGINE YOU WOULD BE THE GLORIOUS BROAD YOU ARE TODAY?
All I wanted as a girl was to be OUT of Pennsylvania. I thought I would live in New York, instead, I live in Mexico. I have good instincts — always have — about self-preservation, having goals and following my heart. Which is WHY I live in Mexico.

YOU'VE ALWAYS BEEN MOVING, MOVING, MOVING — AND CREATING ...
I moved to California when I was 19 — and to Mexico when I was 50. I’ve lived in three geographies: East coast, west coast, south of the border. So, the movement takes place mostly inside me to go where I can create. And the inspiration to create in Mexico is alive everywhere. The very essence of this culture is entrepreneurial. 

HOW HAS “HAPPINESS” CHANGED FOR YOU DURING THE YEARS?
You know, I think it has been the same for me. I think of myself as naturally joyous. I love spending time alone, even though I am hugely social. When I was growing up, my happiest moments of childhood were being alone in my bedroom — drawing, making my own journals, clipping fashion photographs, reading biographies of women. I like to be in my own creative space — then, making it real in the world!  That brings me great joy. 

HULLOOOO! You created a mega successful bookstore in Berkeley, California, then you moved to Mexico at age 50 and created Abrazos, a boutique that’s all about exuberant fashion celebrating women — Frieda Kahlo being a fave. It may be embarrassingly trendy but … you visualized it girlfriend!
Well, yeah, I guess I did...I did. I did. I did.

I am surprised about how my legs look — but they’ll look worse in 10 years — so I better enjoy them today.

SO, WHY MEXICO?
Moving to Mexico was the biggest risk I have ever taken. Saying goodbye to the community that I had loved in California. But I had to after I closed my bookstore in Berkeley. I could not infuse my life with a new dream until I restructured the setting I was in. When I came to San Miguel it was all about reinvention, it was about experiencing a different culture and having a totally different experience. 

WAS IT AN EPIPHANY?
It was. When I arrived in San Miguel I thought, I want this and I will do whatever it takes to live this big new dream: sell the house, get rid of accumulated stuff, put what I treasure into a van and cross the border, inner and outer, never to return again. 

TALK ABOUT A RESTART BUTTON! DO YOU FEEL A FREEDOM AS YOU GET OLDER?
Having that balance between giving to others, giving to ourselves, telling ourselves the truth, telling others the truth, managing time more wisely — not giving it away. When you do that — suddenly your body is more energized, you’re a happier person. You are having a more creative life.

HAVE YOU EVER BOUGHT INTO THAT IDEA OF AN EXPIRATION DATE ON YOUR CAREER, ON YOUR LOOKS, ON YOUR VITALITY, ANY OF THAT?
I would say on career, no. Because I am an entrepreneur at heart. If I had one penny, I would start my own business, no matter what age I was. But the physical — well, all this stuff — energy, looks, hair, body — it’s all becoming something of its own at this age. Of course, we have negative thoughts and scary thoughts. But you can’t cling to them. That’s a cancer of the brain. My wiser self knows: I am surprised about how my legs look today — but they’ll look worse in 10 years — so you better enjoy them today.

(Lots of chuckles between bites)

BRING IT ON...

Bring it on!

AND IT'S ACCEPTING ...
Yeah, and it’s not looking back. You gotta look reality in the face, and you have got to look towards the future. 

IT'S TRUE. BUT YOU'RE IN MEXICO. IT'S A VERY DIFFERENT CULTURE THERE, ISN'T IT? ABOUT BEING OLDER AND BEING ...
Well, it’s a different culture with age. There is courtesy and kindness extended towards elder people here. In San Miguel, there are a lot of older people so you are not being compared to younger people all of the time. Just the opposite. When I say to friends: “I am turning 64 — now that’s a marker” — and they say” “you’re a baby…come on…” I really have to say, it gives you a different perspective on your own age! 

SO WHAT DOES BEING GLORIOUS MEAN TO YOU?
Being fearless and free — I do love my F words: Fearless. Friendship. Freedom. Flaneur. Fashionista. Fiesta. Fun. Food.

GB: We're adding Fucking ...

Did I mention Patrice was joyful? Oh, yeah. She travels all over the Globe, writes, runs her boutique, Abrazos. Check her out at http://sanmigueldesigns.com/  or on Facebook, https://www.facebook.com/sanmiguelpatrice