In "Ticket to Paradise," the first book in my "Cajun Embassy" series, my main character Lizzy Guidry relates a song her mother sang to her as a child. She recalls the song upon seeing a lovely home in the quaint town of Ojai, California.
“I know it sounds silly,” Lizzy said as Olivia handed her a cup of coffee. “My mother used to sing me this song, some old ballad Nana sang to her when she was a child. It talked about finding perfect peace in a place out west.”
“And let the rest of the world go by,” Olivia sang with a knowing smile.
When I was a young girl my mother would sit on the edge of my bed and sing songs to my sister and me. Our favorite was Let the Rest of the World Go By by Ernest R. Ball and J. Keirn Brennan. It became even more poignant when this Louisiana girl moved out west and met my husband in Los Angeles and our favorite getaway was a little “nest” near Santa Barbara, a sweet artist community called Ojai.
Here are the main lyrics to the song, recorded by so many people over the years, including Pat Boone, Connie Francis, Willie Nelson, Ringo Starr and even Jed Clampit. It was also included in the film Out of Africa and in the 1944 film When Irish Eyes are Smiling, in which Dick Haymes sings the tune.
Let the Rest of the World Go By
With someone like you,
a pal good and true,
I’d like to leave it all behind and go and find
some place that’s known
to God alone,
just a spot to call our own.
We’ll find perfect peace,
where joys never cease,
out there beneath a kindly sky.
We’ll build a sweet little nest
somewhere in the west
and let the rest of the world go by.