I joined Lexa Cain’s Summer Hop because I’m ready for a vacation, and it gave me a great way to say goodbye to everyone for June. I’ll be around to your blogs, but probably as I make my way to Oregon. I’ll wave to M. Pax on my way through her beautiful state and keep an eye out for those Gangsta Cows she’s alerted me to. Then I’m off Ireland for a family wedding and a revisit to a few Leprechauns.
I’ve been to a lot of summer vacation places: Costa Rica, Venezuela, Nicaragua, Mexico, Hawaii (Maui, Kawaii, Lanai, Molokai–still my favorite island), Greece, Spain, Italy, Ireland, France, Wales, Scotland (where the word isn’t in the dictionary because they don’t have summer) England, Turkey, Yugoslavia–interesting summer there–New York, Kansas (don’t ask), Alaska and someplace else I can’t remember. So what’s my favorite summer vacation spot? Here it is!
My favorite summer vacation spot is this tiny dot on the map where all things are possible as long as I want them to be. Where I’m the mistress and the servant, and where peace settles inside me with a friendly purr.
|This is where I kick back and think and wonder at my good fortune to have a place on this planet to just be.|
|This is where I plan my stories and plant my seeds and watch my peaches ripen.|
|This is where I read and consider philosophy and magic.|
|This is where I wait for the new birds who find my umbrella a safe nesting place.|
|This is where I pull weeds, turn the dirt, pick fresh produce and savor the smells of summer.|
|This is where the fish live in the ponds, and Albert the Cat used to contemplate their world of water. He’s missed.|
And, of course, this is where I come when everything around me crumbles and I need help.
Bye until July!
Yes. I’m getting reading to Switch Off
Usually I have some good news in this spot, but today I’m changing this a bit. I’m closing shop for the month of June and since we’ve all been in a reflective mood lately, I thought I’d use this Monday to reflect a bit about where I am and where I’m going.
There are several fronts to reflect on: personal life, my writing, this blog.
On the personal front, all is as good as it gets. I’m very lucky to have a family, a home, my health, and friends. I can’t complain about any of it.
As to the writing, there’s all sorts of issues with that. I’m shredding a lot of my latest WIP out of frustration. I have a story to tell, and I’m not telling it right–not yet. The good news is that my research is turning up some fascinating history about something I know little to nothing about.
- Did you know that silver miners spared rats in the mines? And that was because rats were supposed to have some kind of special sensor that signals them when there’s about to be a collapse. When the rats ran, so did the miners.
- And in the lower depths of a silver mine (1000-3000 feet) temperatures could rise to 140/160 degrees F.? They had special cooling rooms where miners retreated to cool off and drink water. They could only work about 40 minutes at a time before collapsing. I’d make it to about a minute.
There’s more. I’ll save it for another post when I regale you with my writing success.
By now you know I’m writing about silver mining in the 1800’s. This period has always fascinated me, so reading about it has been exciting. It’s getting that story to cooperate that’s giving me fits.
|Weary Blogger Help|
As to this blog, I’m weary of it. I love to blog, but I’m tired of this one. I’m hoping that after a month away, I’ll come back with some enthusiasm and some new ideas about how I want this site to look.
This next year I’ll be a co-host for The AtoZ Road Trip with a great blogger at Madlab Entertainment . I won’t do much before July–maybe a couple of posts, but after that I’ll be there regularly once or twice a month. It should be fun, so join us. HERE’S where you sign up.
I’ve made some more changes to the sidebars. I like to keep them up to date as often as possible. New books. New hops. New ideas.
If you’d sign up to follow me by email (top left sidebar), I’d appreciate that. I don’t use the emails except to respond to comments that I think might be interesting or fun to discuss. And I don’t bug people who prefer not to reply to my emails. Temporarily, I’ve gone back to responding on the blog in hopes some will return to see my responses.
Now with a nod to my usual posts, here’s my Quote for the Day:
“May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view.” Edward Abbey, Naturalist
Yesterday I took some good advice and spent the day doing just about anything except sitting in front of a computer. I also relaxed so much I forgot to schedule my Monday post. Guess what? The sun came up anyway.
Loved watching this toddler who couldn’t resist a fresh strawberry. He didn’t quite get that they were for sale, nabbed one before his parents had time to explain and gobbled it down.
I love to hear stories told out loud and I love to be read stories, don’t you? While I was in Northern California driving through the wee towns and across the open high dessert, I stopped at places that were perfect for storytelling. Here’s one.
What is it about the sound, the smell, the taste of home, that softens the heart and pulls memories into the present as if those times had never passed. I’ve traveled a lot and for long periods of time, but even a short four days and only a few hundred miles make home more of a haven than a shelter.
And I don’t care how beautiful the place I’ve visited is, my place is even better. It’s not as cultured. It doesn’t offer the perfect climate. It isn’t where tourists pay to visit. But it’s where my heart resides. It’s where I fit. It’s a part of me and I of it. Yet, it takes leaving once in a while to remind me of how wonderful my spot on the planet really is.
But I have to admit San Diego is a beautiful city on the Pacific. I spent one day at ALA but the rest of my time revisiting a place I used to live. Here’s the artist’s center in Balboa Park. Walking across the colored tiles was like a trip through Wonderland.
There was whimsy along the way too.
And even some philosophy. I loved this.
Please take this thought from Edmund Burke and leave a few words for others to think about and enjoy.
There are days when everything is just right. Here’s one of them.
Perfect 80 degree temperature.
A breeze stirring across a field of poppies.
And I have the chance to be there.
The desert treated me like a queen this trip.
If you have a minute here’s a short video of a few flowers that survive desert cold in winter and desert heat in summer for this one perfect time in spring. The contrast between the rock and the petals has to inspire poetry or at least a novel, right? Now it’s back to work. Oh. And I had some good news right after this field of poppies and I parted company. My second novel will be published this fall.
IT’S SPRING, at least that’s what my volunteer peach tree thinks. This pink display came from a pit I tossed a few years ago and forgot. I probably won’t get any fruit, but man do I get the blossoms and the fragrance. The bees are dancing, they’re so happy about all that sticky sweet nectar.
So, after snapping these pictures and taking a walk around my garden I realized it’s almost Easter. Good grief. I don’t have the New Year’s Eve confetti out of the carpet yet.
I’m off to join my family and friends in some R &R, a hunt for some colorful eggs and bunny stories. Can’t get enough bunny stories, right? My favorite is still Peter Rabbit with Br’er Rabbit a close second.
Do you have a favorite?
I’ll be back by the 7th to return to “My Writing Life,” you know that saga about slogging through from beginning to end on a novel. Then I’ll have a couple of interviews to spice up those days when . . . ahem . . . I’m ready to toss that said novel.
Happy Easter. Happy Spring.