I’m shocked that it has been almost two weeks since my last posting. Shocked, but not surprised. My fingers have been tingling like crazy. Do you get that? That, oh-my-gosh-I-haven’t-been-writing feeling. So there it is. The admission. I haven’t been writing, when I was most charged up to do so. We have been on a long coastal journey which I will tell you more about in paragraph three, but it includes 1400 miles, a job interview, and matzah.
I have been drawing and revisioning my Roar, dummy…AGAIN. Actually I got a great brainstorm while on my recent journey. Another secondary character, a mouse, who watches the action unfolding. I’m excited to finish this up and get it to my agent. Secret agent man has given me permission to put aside the Ballet project for a while. He says that it is best not to put too much work into a non-fiction work lest it be changed by the publisher who is interested in the proposal and first chapter. Instead, Secret agent man has advised me to get to work on the novel that the editor at the conference wants to see. That is all good with me. The characters have been calling to me as I re-read Bird by Bird this week and I am eager to see what they have to say.
The journey started on Friday 18th when we drove from Maine to Pennsylvania to visit with my parents. We admired their forsythia bushes and awoke to lovely birdsong. On Saturday we had Passover Seder #1. It was very casual as we really made it our own, inviting comments and linking the traditional with current events and issues of the day. I love including everyone in the Seder, especially kids. I & E were great and had a lot of wise things to say. Passover Seder #2 was at my cousins’ home. Thanks Robin and Bob! A much bigger and more traditional event, it was great to see the whole fam damily.
Monday we drove to St. Mary’s county where Chris had an interview. Things went well and we are awaiting an offer from the company. Assuming this all goes well we will move from our wonderful home in Maine to a new adventure south of D.C. (Anne Marie are you out there?) I grew up in Northwest DC and I’m looking forward to being closer to my parents, cousins, sister and one of my brothers. It will be tough to leave our home that Chris built for us and our community of 14 years. However, we are planning on renting out our current home for a couple of years until things are clearer. The best thing about blogging is that I know that I will still be connected with all of my writer friends when and if we move. LiveJournal and writing are portable.
But wait, there’s more!
Earl’s Diner inhabits a small portion of the space owned by Earl. The country/bluegrass amphitheater and the oversized barn that houses his collection of John Deere tractors and farm machinery take up the rest of the lot. My husband grew up, up the road from Earl’s and it was the place his family went for breakfast. “Down to Earl’s.” I’ll remember a lot about Earl’s: the Bell jar fruit glasses, the table legs that were jeans and cowboy boots, and the way my oldest son (who was only a toddler then) used to watch the ladies make the cinnamon swirl buns that were as large as a dinner plate. He’d press his little hands and nose against the large window that gave people a view of the mouth watering treats. I remember the huge tubs of butter and lard. That’s what made it so good. YUM . My hubby will, I’m sure, remember much more. A farming community held together by country fairs, school events, and weekends that started with breakfast at Earl’s. God speed Earl. Check out the NYTimes article here.
” For reasons I cannot explain
There’s some part of me wants to see
Well friends I’m home from Memphis, TN. The snow sparkles and shimmers outside my window and icicles drip on my neck each time I scoot out the door and I am happy. Happy to be home in my comfy bed, happy to empty my suitcase, happy to have my computer and my routines and regular bedtimes. It was lovely to reconnect as a family for 10 whole days. We’ll be back together when the snows melt. (Or maybe sooner considering the persistent snowfall.)
We did visit Graceland and I felt that I was, as the song suggests, pulled there by some inexplicable force. I loved the obvious, the stained glass peacock windows, the mirrored TV room with 3 TV’s, the fabric covered walls of the billiards room, the golden seat belt buckles on the airplane.
But the lasting memory is the more subtle fact that this man, this celebrity, this incredibly prolific artist was frozen in time. Elvis was frozen in his youth and as a poor youth he bought a fancy house that is actually pretty small compared to the Extreme Makeover homes of today. We still see him as he was because he and his work never had a chance to evolve. The tour and its information were choreographed to move the thousands of people through his life in a clean and organized manner. The treatment of his death gets one sentence about “heart failure” and “prescription medications.” Even as we walk through hallways glistening with gold and platinum awards, we, I feel for him because of what could have been.
We did plenty of other things too. I highly recommend the Pink Palace Museum and the Children’s Museum of Memphis. FedEx is headquartered in Memphis and has given a lot of corporate funds to the CMOM which includes a great flight exhibit. We also saw A Year With Frog and Toad at the Orpheum theatre. If you are a parent in Memphis look out for other children’s productions, including the Very Hungry Catepillar, coming to the Orpheum later this spring. A huge thank you to the Bricks and the Abbots for taking us in, feeding and treating us like family. Take care of hubby while he’s down south for me.