Carmel Magazine

Carmel Magazine, Summer/Fall 2018

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 211 of 315

210 C A R M E L M A G A Z I N E • S U M M E R / F A L L 2 0 1 8 ceremony," she says. "But I secretly hoped I wouldn't win. I had just spent a month with some of the most extraordinary animals on the planet. I thought, 'I'm not going to be able to deal with this extreme of walking up on the stage and making a speech when just a few days earlier I was communicating with elephants in a completely different way.'" She didn't win, but, "I was very grateful for that." That kind of perspective and humility are rare in her profession. "All my life I've been interested in many different things," Babcock says. "When I was struggling at my profession, many of my colleagues were so frustrated at not working. They were eating themselves up by waiting for the next job. I thought the only way to deal with that is to fill my time with something else that interests me." She turned to another interest: writing. "I've written poetr y, novels and screenplays," she reveals, "but they're all still in the closet." Babcock's parents had settled in Carmel after her father's retirement from the militar y. Following her mother's passing in 2002, the actress came back to refurbish the family home with the intent of putting it on the market, but by the time it was finished, "I decided to move into it." That was in 2004, and except for periods of time in Ireland, Carmel has been her primary residence ever since. "I wanted to leave Los Angeles during the 46 years I spent there," she says. "At that time, it was necessary as an actor to be either in New York or LA. I kept thinking of leaving but didn't want to give up the busi- ness yet." Around this time, she injured her arm while acting in The Glass Menagerie in Ireland. It healed, but she was left with a twitch in her fin- ger. Further investigation led to a diagnosis of Parkinson's Disease. "That was a big jolt, obvi- ously," she recounts. Optimistic and positive to her core, Babcock tells the story of the moment her doctor relayed the news: "And as I was reacting, I thought 'I want to remember this emotion, so I can use it in a role.' This is what actors do. So, following the script in my head, I asked the doctor, 'How long do I have?'…the cliché of all clichés. His answer was, 'eight to ten years.' That was 14 years ago." In the short space allotted for this story, we've only scratched the surface of this fascinat- ing, multitalented and gracious woman. Barbara Babcock is a true Carmel treasure, one with a long and colorful history here, part of the warp and weave of what makes this such a unique and wonderful place. "I go to Carmel beach whenever I have something I need to think about," Babcock says. On one such visit she met longtime friend Robert John. She counts him and his wife Melanie among her closest friends. Babcock's parents had settled in Carmel after her father's retirement from the military. Photo: Kelli Uldall

Articles in this issue

Archives of this issue

view archives of Carmel Magazine - Carmel Magazine, Summer/Fall 2018