Friday, August 18, 2017

punk rock video

I awoke this morning in Nebraska, wishing that I could snap my fingers and skip the rest of the drive (even though the drive across Iowa is infinitely more enjoyable than the drive across Nebraska). But I couldn't escape my fate that easily - so I showered, packed up, ate the free hotel breakfast (great coffee, tasty sausages, really sad powdered eggs), and headed east. I made pretty good time, although I had to stop in Creston (Iowa) for lunch - which required going into a McDonald's and sitting there, since I can no longer have my go-to road trip protein (McNuggets) and also can't easily eat a quarter pounder without the bun. Yes, life is hard.

But I got to my ancestral home a little before 2pm, and my wandering lifestyle can halt for awhile (j/k, I'm going on a road trip next weekend, and that doesn't count our plans to watch the eclipse deep in the dark heart of Missouri).

And now, I need to sleep - I spent some quality time on the patio this afternoon, but I want to spend even more time there tomorrow. Goodnight!

Thursday, August 17, 2017

you got something to prove, you got nothing to lose

I need to go to bed - today was yet another long day on I-80 and I'm ready to sleep. This is my ninth or tenth time crossing Nebraska, and my sixth solo voyage...and Nebraska is super fucking boring even on the first pass, so today was pretty annoying. But it started off great - I had breakfast with Katie, and we daydreamed about how wonderful it would be if I lived in Denver/Boulder (I realize that some of you will not be happy to hear this, so apologies in advance for leaving you forever).

But I had to get on the road eventually, and then I drove alllll day. I'm spending tonight in Lincoln, the capital of this illustrious (aka incredibly boring) state...I got here around 7:30, and then had dinner at a Mexican place nearby. And now I'm going to sleep early - I'm ready for Iowa and some #smalltownlife, so I don't want to dawdle while getting out of here tomorrow. Goodnight!

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

juggaloooooooooos

No blog tonight, I've stayed up too late with Katie and I must sleep so I can drive to Iowa tomorrow. Goodnight!

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

another day in paradise

I'm in Denver, and I should go to bed immediately so that I can eke out whatever sleep I can get before the dulcet tones of children's screams wake me up in the morning. You can probably guess from that that I'm staying at Katie's tonight (and tomorrow night)...I woke up in SF at six a.m., showered and threw my stuff in my rental car, and drove to SFO. I made it there with enough time to eat breakfast (one of the best airport breakfasts I've ever had - I need to remember that the wine bar next to gate 70 serves a killer breakfast), and then I boarded my flight.

We were slightly delayed, and then as the pilot was taxiing to the runway they slammed on the brakes to avoid another plane, throwing one of the flight attendants into the galley wall, where she appeared to hurt her shoulder. However, we took off anyway even though the attendant looked miserable for the rest of the flight - I guess United's new policy is to leave you on the plane if they've injured you, so I guess that's progress!

sssanyway. I spent most of the flight napping, snacking, and reading the inflight magazine, since I was too tired to contemplate anything else. When we got to Denver I retrieved my bags, took a lyft to Katie's, dropped my luggage off, and then walked to Avanti to meet her for a quick drink. This turned into me having a glass of pinot by myself since she had trouble finding parking, and we would have only had twenty minutes together there even in the best circumstances since she needed to go home to relieve the nanny.

But she parked long enough to come in for two minutes, and then we came back here, made dinner, did some crafting activities with the girls, ate, and then gossipped off and on for the rest of the night, as we're wont to do. And now I must sleep (and also hydrate) - goodnight!

Monday, August 14, 2017

if you want to destroy my sweater

No blog tonight - I spent the day taking care of business and the evening hanging out with John and Jess (and Ian, who is very close to being able to say 'wamp'). John made a cocktail that was better than I expected it to be (we named it 'walk the dog'), and then we had some wine and some tamales and a lot of conversation on their second-floor deck + in their living room (mostly about life, careers, the pursuit of happiness, and the genetics around quadruple half cousins, as we do).

But now I need to sleep - I'm leaving for Denver relatively early tomorrow, which means leaving Berkeley even earlier in an attempt to survive traffic. Goodnight!

Sunday, August 13, 2017

storming through the party like my name is el niño

I had a great day, but I don't want to blog tonight - I need to get off screens and devices and news sources, which is basically the refrain for 2017. I woke up relatively early this morning, did some work, and got a mani/pedi - the nails all looked great until, much later in the day, I tripped over my own sandal and wiped out on the sidewalk, bruising my knee and scraping the paint off my big toe. This is not the first time I've tripped like that and I'm sure it won't be the last, so I brushed the dirt off my shoulders (okay, my knees) and moved on with my life. I also got a bottle of nail polish at Walgreens tonight that is a close-enough substitute for the color that got scraped off, so no one will see my unsightly toe and assume I'm a vagrant.

Anyway, after the mani/pedi, I ran a couple of errands and had a salad at sweetgreens (yum). Then I went back to my temporary abode and worked for a couple of hours, but I slacked off to go shopping with Jess. Jess *never* shops for herself, and I was on a mission to make her buy something (err, facilitate her desire to buy something). So we went down to Fourth Street, explored some clothing shops, explored some even more interesting paper shops, and ended up at Marine Layer, where Jess bought a super cute dress and I got a sweatshirt and a button-down. I also discovered that Nopalito has a cookbook, which is a game-changer! If I could make their food at home, I might never have to come to San Francisco again....

...j/k, I would miss the three of you from SF who read this blog too much to abandon you forever. After we shopped, we went back to the neighborhood and hung out with John and Ian, and I delivered the lemons that Adit had given me to give to them - I'm hopeful that this will turn into limoncello that I can benefit from, but we shall see.

Then I called my parents, and then I spent the rest of the evening working (with a break for Mexican food, since I was craving chips like there's no tomorrow...and maybe there won't be a tomorrow, but I'm not in the mood to think about nukes and Nazis, so I'm going to bed instead). Goodnight!

Saturday, August 12, 2017

theme and variation

I'm going to bed asap because I have a million things to do tomorrow and not nearly enough time in which to do them. Today was lovely, though, with some unexpected twists. I spent the morning procrastinating far too long on twitter (news is enraging, particularly coming out of Charlottesville - remind me again how we used to have all sorts of national pride over the fact that we destroyed the Nazis? although since some of the top Nazis got to come to the US and be scientists and military advisors after the war, one could argue we didn't exactly do everything we could to root out Nazi ideology..).

But I managed to put away the twitter, make some coffee, take care of some stuff around the house, and then speed (aka crawl) across the bridge to the evil city. I hadn't seen Katrina on this trip, so we agreed to meet for brunch at Nopalito. This is, of course, one of my favorite places to eat when I'm in the city, and it was great to spend some time there while catching up with her - we went deep on a lot of topics, many of which were amusing/wtf-generating.

When we were done with that + our errands, I dropped her off at a grocery store and said my fond farewells. Then I got my hair cut - I was way overdue for a bang trim, and also ready for some of the layers to be cleaned up, and my stylist (Lauren, whom I adore) did a great job. While I was sitting in her chair, I got a text from Adit/Priyanka suggesting that I stop by - if they'd texted thirty minutes later they would have been out of luck, since I would have gone back to the east bay and categorically refused to drive the bridge again.

So, after my hair was stylish again, I went to their new house - they recently bought a place and are in the middle of getting the permits for a renovation. The house shows a lot of promise, although I'm guessing that the construction will take awhile. But we had a good time hanging out in the backyard talking about life while watching Vihaan trying/not trying to impale himself on various thorns, brambles, scissors, and other instruments of toddler destruction.

Eventually, we took Vihaan home so that his grandmother could start the dinner/bedtime process, and then Adit, Priyanka and I went to Namu Gaji (a Korean place near them that I also really like, although I don't make it there all that often, mostly because it usually has a line). Since today was Outside Lands over in Golden Gate Park, Adit's neighborhood was pretty empty, and they were able to seat us right away. We had a delish stone pot (with a small worm crawling on one of the cucumbers, but we ate the dish anyway) and a couple of other dishes, and we discussed how we're living and how to move faster and what we want to accomplish this year, and it was all v. good.

But we're getting old, and they needed to get back to Vihaan and I wanted to come home and sleep, so I drove back to Berkeley as soon as I left them and was here before 8:30. This means I missed out on potential fun in the city with other fun people (aka Vidya), but I probably need to stay in tonight and get some rest anyway so that I don't sabotage my body for all the stuff I've got coming up.

Speaking of, it's time for bed - goodnight!

Friday, August 11, 2017

so come dance this silence down through the morning

I had a long day that was totally full of conversation, so I'm ready to crawl into bed and turn my brain off for awhile. I woke up this morning in time to shower and stop at Philz before heading to the evil city - there are things to be said for the Bay Area, but those things are mostly reduced to a) Philz coffee and b) friendship. Of course, Karl the Fog was devouring San Francisco, as he always does in August (#fogust)...but better fog than a nuclear holocaust, amirite?

Too soon, too soon. sssanyway, I got to SF a little before eleven and did a bit of work in my car before meeting Barbara and Grace for lunch at the Cliff House. This is our usual spot since it's convenient from the north and south bay, but it's really not convenient from the east bay. However, the ocean view was as delightful as always, and it was good to see Grace and Barbara one last time before I head out again. When we were done, Barbara and I went over to Veronica's - V lives on the ocean and is quite close to Cliff House, but she couldn't come to lunch since she had electricians and furniture deliveries and all sorts of other useful-but-temporarily-terrible situations going on.

So the three of us hung out for awhile. When Barbara left, I probably should have left as well...but I looked at maps and it was going to take me 90mins to get back to Berkeley (25mi). So, I lingered until Veronica invited me to stay for dinner, which I then acted surprised about accepting (okay, maybe that's not exactly how it went down, but that's not entirely inaccurate). So we hung out the rest of the afternoon, and when her husband got home we hung out some more and also ordered sushi. I avoided all crab, but I'm still not feeling super great after that eating experience...it was delicious, but I feel vaguely queasy now, and I don't know whether it's some other shellfish issue, some cross-contamination, something psychosomatic, or bad dreams of my recent crab experiences. If I vomit for three hours tonight I'll probably just kill myself and be done with it, so if that happens, know that I loved you all very much.

But I doubt I'll get sick...fingers crossed. I didn't get home until almost eleven, since we had many things to discuss, and now I'm desperate for sleep so I can take care of lots of tings tomorrow. Goodnight!

Thursday, August 10, 2017

if she remembers, she hides it whenever we meet

I have relocated to a house down the block from where I spent the last ten days - which means no more access to the hot tub (sadness) but also no more responsibilities to a dog who sometimes adored me and sometimes wanted to eat my face. I spent the morning getting ready, packing, walking the dog, tidying up after myself, etc., and it's a good thing that I was efficient about this because the owners came back several hours earlier than I was expecting. But that was actually good for me - it meant that I could leave their place around noon without worrying that Lily would think I was abandoning her just like everyone else had.

So I said goodbye to the dog and dragged my stuff into my rental car, which I then drove halfway down the block so that I could unload it. I'm staying at John's parents' house since they're in Tahoe this week, which is super convenient for me (and v. kind of them). I unloaded my car when I got here, then promptly left to run some errands - this mostly involved going to Walnut Creek and window shopping (and shopping shopping), which was a fun way to spend the afternoon.

Then I came back here and spent an hour talking to my friend Maya, who is also a writer, and I am slowly seducing her into the idea of coming to Denver next year for a writing retreat. This is an easy sell because next year's RWA conference happens to be in Denver, and if I'm living there and have a guest room (obvi not a done deal yet, but my inclinations are in that direction), she could stay with me.

As soon as I was done with her, Jess called, and we rendezvoused and John and Jess's house for dinner. John made some vegetarian tacos (zucchini and onion) that were utterly delish, so I loaded up on that (which was really a perfect base for guac/salsa/cheese, which is what the people actually want). I also loaded up on boulevardiers and port...it's clear that I'm growing up since port is now a delightful sipping moment at the end of the evening rather than the disastrous cheap port debacles that Adit poured down my throat so many years ago. And yes, that's me playing the victim and blaming Adit for all my bad choices, #sorrynotsorry.

But by nine it was time for all good adults to be in bed, so I left John and Jess and walked across the street to settle into my new abode. I wanted to fall asleep then, but instead I unpacked and did a load of laundry (not necessary from a quantity of clothes standpoint, but v. necessary from how much dog hair was on my stuff). I fell asleep waiting for stuff to dry, then woke up and folded tings, but now it's time to sleep in earnest. Goodnight!

we could have had it all

I know I start half my posts with saying that I'm too tired to blog, but tonight it's really true. I spent the morning answering emails, the afternoon shopping for clothes (Berkeley has a surprising number of nice capitalist shops given its hippie reputation), the late afternoon hanging out with John and Ian in their backyard (Ian didn't die despite finding every rake in the bay area), and the evening with my friend Rachael (who taught my Venice retreat). Rachael and I spent copious amounts of time in the hot tub, and when she left I decided to reenter for some alone time under the stars (and by stars I mean fog)...so it's no wonder that I'm wiped out, since white wine and steam will do that to a girl.

And now it's time for bed - I have to pack tomorrow to relocate to a different house on this street since the owners are getting back in the afternoon, and I'll probably have to hide my packing so that Lily doesn't freak out and trigger all her abandonment issues. Wish me luck with that - goodnight!

Tuesday, August 08, 2017

help me stay awake i'm falling

I had a v. lovely day even if it involved far too much driving around the bay area (which is a good reminder that I never want to have to drive/commute here regularly again). I woke up a little later than I should have this morning after only getting six hours of sleep, so I really should go to bed immediately...but I managed to drag myself out of bed, make coffee, walk Lily, eat breakfast, shower, and get out the door in a reasonable time frame. I needed to pick up a rental car at SFO, and before I did that I needed to stop at Nordstrom in SF (which was basically on the way) to pick up a pair of shoes I'd bought from the anniversary sale. So I took BART from Berkeley to SF, made a quick stop to pick up the shoes (they're lovely, thanks for asking!), and then took BART to SFO to get the rental car.

Unfortunately the car kind of smells like someone was trying to cover up the smell of vomit, which is a real bummer since it has less than two thousand miles on it. But it was the only one available, except for one that had a note on the window in marker chalk saying that there was an issue with the tires, so I chose smell over risk. I like driving with my windows down anyway, so it isn't the end of the world.

Then I drove back into SF to have a too-quick lunch with Lauren (aka Subz) - her life is chaotic and mine has been v. focused on being a hermit in the east bay, so this was a good chance for us to get together. We talked about all manner of subjects in a relatively short period of time, and I was super bummed to say goodbye to her - but I try to content myself with the knowledge that I'll be back in September, so hopefully I'll see her more thoroughly then.

Then I drove back the east bay, which took an hour at 3pm (this place is a cesspool). Then I did a couple of hours of work. Then I picked up Chandlord at the BART station, and we hung out in the backyard and drank wine and talked about life. Eventually Claudia and Sam showed up, and even more eventually the pizza we ordered showed up, and it was super fun (C/S) and super tasty (the pizza). At some point John and Jess joined us and we spent a long, lovely time in the hot tub, drinking prosecco and pretending it was spring break (and pretending that we don't all need the hot tub for our aging joints).

And now I need to go to bed so that I can accomplish all the things tomorrow - goodnight!

outgunned, outmanned, outnumbered, outplanned

If you'd asked me three hours ago whether I would still be awake right now, I would have said no. Now that I've typed that, I feel like that could be the title of my memoir: "If you'd asked me three hours ago whether I would still be awake right now, I would have said no: The Sara Wampler Story".

But I stayed awake after all, despite a day that made me sleepy. I spent some quality time walking the dog and eating yogurt and messing around in my bullet journal - I need to get back on track with my tasks and writing, and planning helps with that. I also had a long conversation with my friend Barbara (the one who lives in Colorado), another long conversation with my mom, and a third conversation with a guy I met at RWA who wanted to talk about operations/management stuff (not long, but interesting). Then I took a nap in the sun because #yolo.

But after that, I buckled down, did some work, took care of some house chores, and then went over to say hi to Ian because he was making kissing faces at me through the window (supervised by his nanny, who luckily knows who I am and so didn't call the cops on me). As I was walking over, I ran into John, who was just getting home from work, so we sipped some port and watched Ian walk/crawl around and generally troll us.

Jess eventually got home, and we had dinner (tamales! and a boulevardier for me) before they put Ian to bed and I came back to walk the dog again. They rejoined me later, though, for some hot tub action - but this is all v. sedate, since we are old people and want to go to bed at nine.

Of course, I didn't actually go to bed at nine - I came upstairs, quite relaxed, and then finished reading the book I started the other night (PRIMATES OF PARK AVENUE - pretty good, all in all). And now I muuuuuust sleep - goodnight!

Sunday, August 06, 2017

all monkeys do what they see

I had a pretty perfect day in the dirty east bay. I got enough sleep, then got up, showered, took Lily for a walk, and talked to my parents - probably not for long enough, and definitely way earlier in the day than usual, but I wanted to catch up with them before the rest of the day's plans commenced.

Then, John and Jess and Ian and I went down to Saul's (aka the best place to have breakfast/lunch/brunch in Berkeley, although don't tell Jess that we had brunch since she disapproves of such a dissolute meal). We had to wait a little bit for a table, but it was totally worth it - I had my favorite corned beef hash, which was as perfect as always, and I also got a latke and inhaled almost all of it. John's spinach benedict looked amazing, as did Jess's pita/egg sandwich, and Ian did a great job trying to eat his crayons. In other words, we all won!

Then they left to come home, and I wandered around the neighborhood for a bit and bought some groceries just in time to get picked up from Safeway by Heather (aka dear respected madam). She v. kindly drove all the way up from San Jose to see me, and it was totally delightful - we spent a good seven hours hanging out, mostly on the back patio in the dappled sunlight with a bottle of rosé and some snacks. Then we ordered Indian food for dinner (pretty tasty, not the best I've ever had), and then we sat in the hot tub as the sun went down, and it was all pretty much perfect.

Then she left, I took a quick shower to get rid of the hot tub feeling, and I also messed around online for too long. But now it's time for bed - goodnight!

Saturday, August 05, 2017

i stay awake with my disease

Way too tired to blog (I'd fallen asleep with the light on while reading, but I rallied to write this). I had a great day - brunch with Claudia (aka Santy Claude) at a ridiculously overpriced, trying-to-hard gluten free place, followed by Philz coffee, followed by an oddly meandering/entertaining conversation with a Berkeley hippie/construction contractor, followed by a nap in the sun and some quality time on the patio. Then I ate some soup, hung out with John and Jess and Ian and two boulevardiers (the land of wampertunity), walked Lily, and wrote in my journal as the sun went down.

After Ian was asleep, John and Jess came over and we hung out in the hot tub - this seemed like an acceptable risk, since a) his baby monitor was playing on their phone and b) Ian's window was closer to my outdoor jacuzzi than many nurseries are to living rooms in big houses around the country. It was a pretty idyllic end to the evening, and I followed it up by reading in bed until my eyes gave up the fight.

And now I must sleep - goodnight!

Friday, August 04, 2017

someone how we mixed up goodbye and goodnight

I'm too tired to blog, which I realize is an all-too-common refrain. I got up this morning and took care of some tings, and then Veronica showed up and we of course had to catch up while I made an omelette. Then I walked the dog and we did a bit of work, but we had to take another break when Grace arrived. Grace came over from Marin for the day, and it was great to see her - the writing dates are one of the things I really miss while traveling.

Anyway, we all worked until lunch (with varying degrees of success), before picking up salads at Sweetgreen. Yes, I've become a California stereotype again. V had to leave round 3:15, but Grace and I kept going - alternating between reading and talking and discussing life with John, who dropped by to work at my kitchen table and also drink some of the limoncello that the house owners left for me.

Then Grace and I ordered thai delivery, which turned out to be really delicious (surprisingly so for delivery). We sat outside and enjoyed the evening, including when John and Jess showed up for an impromptu five-minute visit so that Ian could kiss me goodnight. I could also hear them yell 'wamp' through their kitchen window, so it's possible that this neighborhood doesn't really have boundaries in the same way that other neighborhoods do....

sssanyway, everyone eventually left me (after Grace and I laughed harder than I have for awhile after comparing notes on a writer who was v. v. successful in indie erotica back during the gold rush days, and who is now using a gofundme to pay for her divorce and is writing really short, really ridiculous erotica to try to cash it. Lol.

And now, after taking Lily for another walk and reading and daydreaming, I'm desperate feor bed - goodnight!

Thursday, August 03, 2017

he said they toured the country far away from the rio grande, but the road just wore them down

I need to go to bed immediately - I spent far too much time staring at my computer today, and only a hard reset on my eyes will stop the headache currently brewing behind them. Today was pretty good, all in all - Veronica came over, of course, and we spent the morning working. We also ate leftover chicken tortilla soup, and I think I've convinced her that I'm an excellent cook (true, but I'm also putting way more effort into this than usual). Then we worked this afternoon, but when she left I had her drop me off at Philz, since I hadn't been there on this trip to California (waiting four days to go to Philz is criminal!).

I was going to write there, but I started texting [censored], and that turned into [censored], so no writing happened. Then I took a lyft back to the house, talked to my parents, and walked Lily, since she was v. eager to go for a walk (she's a weird dog; she refused to go this morning, then couldn't wait to go this afternoon). Then I talked to Terry half an hour later than we had scheduled - we'd been trying to catch up for awhile, so it's too bad that I kept her waiting because of this dog situation :(

But it was fun to catch up, so hopefully she'll forgive me. Then I had dinner with John and Jess and Ian - but it was in the third house I've been in on this block, since his parents bought the house across the street from them and they decided to eat over there tonight. I got a tour of the house, which is gorgeous; I also got twenty million kisses from Ian, who was being v. demanding that Auntie Wamp kiss him at every opportunity (you know when he wants a kiss because he scrunches up his lips into a pucker that takes up half his face, so the kisses are a little slobbery, but he's young enough to get away with it).

Then I came back to my house, soothed Lily since she had apparently decided I was never coming back after an hour away, and then worked until now. And now it's time to sleep - goodnight!

Wednesday, August 02, 2017

the girl you’ll always love, the one you have no memory of

Today was really lovely, all in all. I slept in a little later than planned, so I waited to walk the dog until after Veronica arrived - the dog (Lily) is now totally fine with me, so that's a good thing. Then I spent the morning writing and journaling, all of which was v. good for me.

But I had to get myself out of the story and into the shower so that I could get ready for my big plan of the day. V and I had a reservation for late lunch (1:45!) at Chez Panisse Cafe, which I was super excited for. I've been to a lot of great/famous restaurants in the Bay Area, but somehow I've never been to Chez Panisse. The lunch scene is more lowkey (especially in terms of ability to get reservations) than the dinner scene, and it was totally perfect. We sat by a window overlooking Berkeley, and it was a delightful place to have a glass of rosé and some wonderful conversation with a great friend. It was also a delightful place to eat duck (I don't usually order duck, but this was too delish to resist), and our dessert was somehow amazing despite being a relatively simple pairing of a blackberry sherbet on top of a meringue.

After that, I could have easily napped/daydreamed away the afternoon, but instead I parted ways with Veronica and went across the street to the grocery store, where I got stuff to make dinner tonight. I was in the mood for chicken tortilla soup, and I'd invited John and Jess over to partake of it with me. The cooking all went well and I was really enjoying it...until I discovered that the tortillas I bought today were somehow moldy even though they claimed they weren't expired yet. Gross. Luckily, I still had four from the fish tacos I'd made yesterday, and also John came to the rescue - he brought Ian and some corn masa and a tortilla press over and made me three more tortillas, which were perfect for the soup. We also had quite the adventure trying to keep Ian and Lily separate when they both wanted to get in each other's faces - perhaps it all would have turned out fine, but it seemed like a high possibility for disaster if they hung out in each other's space.

When the soup was done, John and Jess and Ian came back over, and we had a rather idyllic time outside until a bee drove us inside. We still enjoyed soup and limoncello inside until it was time for Ian to go to bed. Then I cleaned up, took Lily for another walk, and spent some quality time outside in the twilight with my laptop and my exploding to-do list.

And now I need to sleep so that I can repeat some aspects of this process tomorrow (mostly the friend time, sans the delish Chez Panisse lunch and my adventures in soup-making). Goodnight!

Tuesday, August 01, 2017

we keep living anyway...we rise and we fall and we break and we make our mistakes

I'm happy to report that my new dog friend seems happy enough - I'm pretty sure she won't eat my face off in the middle of the night, so that's good news. She didn't howl at all last night, and she was happy enough to go on walks this morning and tonight, so it all seems good. I probably shouldn't be away from the house too long since she seems to get neurotic again when I go away for awhile, but since I want to get some work done this week, that's not such a bad thing.

Anyway, today was good - Veronica came over again, and I sacrificed some quality writing time to make us some fish tacos (using the recipe that Aunt B made, which turned out really well). V left around 3:30, and then I took a nap and did some more work before meeting up with John and Jess (and Ian, who was reluctantly along for the ride) to go to Berkeley Bowl (the local version of Whole Foods). Chandlord (remember her?) met us there, since she took BART over from the city, and we went back to John and Jess's and ate the spoils of our Berkeley Bowl pillaging. When it was time for Ian to go to bed, Chandlord came over here briefly, but she took off pretty early to get back to the city. And then I walked the dog again and spent the rest of the evening playing around in my new journal - I go through a journal every 3-4 months, and it was time to start a new one.

And now I'm desperate for sleep - goodnight!

Monday, July 31, 2017

fear of corners

I'm not feeling like blogging tonight, but I've gone so many nights without a proper post that I'm beginning to forget how to do it, so I should probably write something. I tried to write last night, but I was so exhausted that I somehow closed my laptop without finishing or posting, so #sorrynotsorry.

As I tried to say last night, I'm in Berkeley - I'm dogsitting for John and Jess's next door neighbors, which is great in some ways because it's giving me a quiet home base for ten days or so. I have grand plans to write a lot and cook a lot and generally get my productivity back on track, which is why I didn't rent a car - with a car, I would be tempted to drive all over the bay area to see everyone I know, and while that is a v. worthy goal, I really can't afford to spend the next two weeks doing that. I've already had too much time off this summer, and while I trust that the story is percolating in the back of my brain during periods like this, I need to actually sit down and write the story at some point or else all the percolation means nothing.

So, I'm holing up in Berkeley, getting all of my social needs met by John and Jess (who kindly fed me breakfast this morning since I hadn't bought groceries yet) and Veronica (who has to be in Berkeley every day this week on kid errands, and so is writing here during the day). I wasn't sure how this would go yesterday, when the dog I'm taking care of seemed to be extremely pissed off about my existence. I also wasn't sure how it would go last night, when she howled from loneliness and despair over her missing owners every couple of hours throughout the night. But this morning I opened my door and let her come in and sniff around me and my stuff, and then she was quite happy to let me take her on a walk, so we've reached some sort of careful detente.

Getting her to stop howling and take a walk was pretty much the most exciting thing that happened today - it was hard to top that feeling of relief. But it was great to be able to walk next door and have breakfast with John and Ian, and then Veronica came over and we worked all day. That, of course, means I mostly took care of things I hadn't been able to do last week, and also that I talked to her far more than we should have talked, but no regrets. We took a break to grab lunch from Sweet Greens, and when she left I had her drop me off at a grocery store so I could stock up on stuff and lyft back here. Then I spent the evening walking the dog, doing laundry, and taking care of some business stuff - all v. exciting, I know.

And now I need to fold my laundry and go to bed - I'm trying to stay on an early schedule here since I need to walk the dog in the mornings and Veronica is usually coming over around 8:30 (normal time in normal human situations, but super early for my vampirish tendencies). Goodnight!

the dog days are over

[editor's note: this was supposed to post last night, but when I logged in to my computer this morning, I found I never finished it. more to come tonight!]

You'll have to wait another day for a decent update - I got a few hours of sleep last night, got to the airport in Orlando, boarded my flight, and was thrilled to discover that I had an empty seat next to me. So I worked and napped all the way to San Francisco - I'm here mostly to dogsit, which is not going well at the moment (the owners left before I got here, and the dog was distinctly displeased to see me). However, the upside is that I'm now next-door neighbors with John and Jess, so I hung out with them and also took advantage of their offer for supper.

Saturday, July 29, 2017

california dreaming

Another night blogging on my phone, so you're going to have to wait again for a productive recap. But today was death....I was trying to type "great" and autocorrect went with "death", and that's so right that I'm leaving it.

I was super exhausted after my brush with the glorious future last night, and I also have a blister on my pinky toe that is the size of my pinky toe, so this morning got off to a rough start. But I met with my editor, had a long lunch with Vivi/Lizzie/Sarah (one person), signed some books, met another friend, and then had drinks and dinner with Amber since I really didn't see her enough this trip. And now I'm all packed up and need to sleep six hours before getting up to catch my flight - goodnight!

Friday, July 28, 2017

i'm a believer

I have seen the future and it is glorious.

And by that I mean I spent 6pm to midnight at Animal Kingdom, culminating in the new Avatar ride, which shows some of the possibilities of virtual reality in ways that I've never experienced before. I want to live in that world...but right now I live in a world where I have another day of conference to get through, and my roommate is trying to sleep, so I'll have to proselytize to you about our brave new virtual reality world another time. Goodnight!

Thursday, July 27, 2017

right said fred

Too tired to blog, especially since I'm on my phone since my roommate is asleep - but today was an excellent day full of excellent meetings, followed by a lot of fun at the RITAs, where none of my friends won. But for more info you'll have to tune in tomorrow - goodnight!

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

this is what it sounds like when doves cry

Everything still seems slightly surreal, which I believe may be because I'm still dehydrated/exhausted from my intense vomiting experience the other night - but I've held it together remarkably well (literally! someone remarked on it today!), so hopefully some more sleep tonight will make it all even better.

Today was quite busy, though. I woke up in one hotel and had to shower and repack so that we could all adjourn to the Swan and Dolphin - two hotels connected by a breezeway, which is a lie because there's no fucking breeze and it's a million degrees in Orlando. My room (with Amber) is in the Swan, which is possibly nicer (and has a coffee shop), but is not where all the main stuff is, which means a lot of walking back and forth. So we got checked in (after I taught Grace the future, aka how to use uber), and then I had a meeting with an author friend, followed by lunch with Grace and Amber. Barbara met us as well, and then we went to a two-hour marketing talk (interesting! but I wanted to fall asleep and/or die in the middle).

Then I left to take a v. tiny break to myself, which meant unpacking instead of the nap I really wanted. That led straight into a meeting with Vivi (aka Sarah, aka Lizzie) and Kim about the workshop we're giving Friday. Then I hung out in the bar, and then Grace and Veronica and I had an early dinner. After that, I ran back to my room again, changed as quickly as possible, and then accompanied Grace to an awards ceremony.

Alas, she didn't win, but I had a lot of fun hanging out with her (even if I gave myself an RSI from clapping too much). We also ran into Kristin there, who I used to see quite a bit when I was active in the SF romance chapter, so we adjourned to the bar after to keep talking after the ceremony. Barbara and Monica eventually joined us, and it was all totally delightful.

But of all my days here, today was actually possibly the easiest one, so I should really take advantage of my bed while I have the chance. Goodnight!

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

i want something just like this

I didn't blog last night because I felt like I was dying, #sorrynotsorry. And really, all I need to say is that I'm never going to eat crab again....

But let's rewind. Yesterday was a series of annoyances, since I had to pack up my car and deal with the AAA guy, who decided that my battery needed to be replaced. I'm not sure about this in retrospect, but I can't deal with the battery later, so c'est la vie. The AAA guy told me a long story of love and loss and how his first wife died (after divorcing him with a promise to remarry in four years, and then she died in four years instead), and it was all v. dramatic and will probably feed into a book someday.

Then I ran errands, ate lunch, bought some shoes, and got a mani/pedi, as required by RWA's bylaws. And then I had dinner with Sarah - we went to There, which was super fucking hipster and amazing. The food was great, the drinks were tasty, and we had a long, delightful conversation...

...which turned into me throwing up for three hours straight. I had crab, which is what I've had the last two times I got this sick, and now I'm pretty sure that it's not a food poisoning fluke and is probably a developing shellfish allergy. I'll draw a veil over all of this, but suffice it to say that I dehydrated myself by emptying out all my insides (and sweating profusely), and it was an intensely awful evening.

So I finally stopped puking at 1:30ish, and I set my alarm for 4:15...and then slept through it because my phone was on silent. I woke up at 5:09, which was 9 minutes after I had planned to leave for the airport, and I took a super fast (but incredibly necessary, due to sweat and vomit) shower and threw my remaining stuff in a bag and ran out the door and left the final cleanup to Sarah, which was too bad. But I made it to the airport with enough time to get a coffee (not enough time to get breakfast, but I didn't want to eat it anyway), so it all turned out about as well as I could have hoped.

I slept almost all the way here, with a break in Atlanta to eat some lunch. The check-in process at my current hotel was a kind-of nightmare, and it took almost an hour to get to my room...which is pirate themed in the most incredible way. But I'm only here for a night - my roommate wasn't able to get us a room in the conference hotel tonight, so we're a couple of miles away.

So I relaxed here for a bit, then went to the conference hotel to meet up with Grace, Veronica, and Barbara (my SF crew) for dinner. Amber (my roommate) went straight from the airport to the hotel/restaurant to join us, and it was all v. tasty and v. fun (with a waiter who seemed to be faking being Italian, but I could be too cynical).

And then we came home and tried to take selfies in the pirate bed and laughed until we cried, which is better than the crying I was doing last night, so I'll take it. Goodnight!

Sunday, July 23, 2017

cruel intentions

Today was another day that didn't go quite as planned. I woke up this morning and was actually productive for most of the day - I spent the morning journaling on the porch, which was delightful, and then I spent some v. solid time doing laundry and packing and generally getting ready to go. Since my flight isn't until Tuesday, this is unusually early for me, and I was feeling very smug about it....

So I took a long break and talked to my parents, as per usual. But by 5pm I was starving since I hadn't really eaten much beyond what I could scrounge from the fridge, so Sarah and I decided to go to Avanti since she hadn't been there yet. So we walked out to my car, got in....

...and it was dead. Boooo. Of course I immediately assumed that it had something to do with the service I just got done, although I don't know yet. And of course this is terrible timing, since I'm leaving Tuesday morning and need to move my car before that happens. But I didn't want to call AAA tonight - after they jump it, I'm going to have to drive it around for awhile, and I think I want to take it immediately to Katie's and leave it there, which means I need to be all packed up and have my car loaded when I leave here since I can't leave anything at the airbnb.

Needless to say, I was v. much not thrilled with the whole situation. So we took a lyft to Avanti anyway, since I was still starving, and I had an arepa and a lot of wine and some great conversation with Sarah to make everything a little better. When we got back, we walked down the street to DQ and got ice cream, which made everything even better (although we almost got horribly stymied there, since they closed the walk-up window right after we got there, and we wouldn't have been able to drive through because my car doesn't work, lol).

And now I need to sleep so I can deal with this new disaster tomorrow - goodnight!

Saturday, July 22, 2017

buy me some peanuts and cracker jacks

Today was great, but I definitely overheated and now feel like an octogenarian. I took the morning pretty easy, but I made some iced coffee and some delish scrambled eggs and then sat out on the porch and worked for awhile. Yes, I'm living the dream.

But I had to live a different kind of dream this afternoon, since Sarah and I had plans to be social. Our first stop was a late brunch at Ophelia's Electric Soapbox, which I've wanted to go to for awhile - they are a sister restaurant to Linger and Root Down, both of which I love. Ophelia's is in an old brothel downtown, and they've turned it into a restaurant/concert venue. We got there in time to hear the last couple of songs from the brunch band, who were pretty good, and then we spent a lot of time talking over bottomless mimosas (which were served in pint glasses, bad idea) and some incredibly tasty brunch food.

Then we walked down the street and grabbed a drink and some nachos at a bar across from Coors Field (the Rockies' ballpark). The nachos were entirely unnecessary and yet so necessary, and my drink was pretty killer (some sort of mule-type drink with whisky and ginger beer, which I didn't finish because I didn't want to get drunk). Then we went to the ballpark just before the game actually started.

I'm not the biggest fan of baseball - it has some entertaining moments, but mostly I think it's boring. However, games can be fun - and the Rockies have clearly tried to lure more people in by creating a whole rooftop bar area and charging less than $20 for tickets to the bar area (which includes open seating in some nosebleed sections). I decided to prioritize water over drinks, which was probably wise since I overheated in the three innings when we sat in the cheap seats (the sun was pointed directly at us like a torture camp heat lamp). After that, I was pretty fucking done, but I wanted to power on since I thought I'd feel up for more fun (or at least a cocktail) once I cooled down.

Alas, my stomach started to hurt and I never got back in it to win it. We ended up leaving altogether at the bottom of the seventh, and Sarah was interested in coming home as well, so we got back here a little before nine like the old people we are. Then we watched a comedy show (Ari Shaffir on Netflix - really hilarious, you should watch him), and now I need to sleep and hope that it will help me recover from my heat-induced hangover. Goodnight!

Friday, July 21, 2017

she's never satisfied

I'm truly too tired to blog - I spent the morning writing (yessss), then grabbed lunch with Katie, then picked up my car from the dealer (and put new registration tags on it! which California mailed to Katie, thus ending one piece of my ongoing nomadic saga), then got my brows waxed and tinted for the first time in eleven months. My bangs cover a myriad of faults, but I like going into RWA feeling well-groomed.

Katie got her brows waxed after me, so I hung out until she was done, and then we ran an errand that involved driving an hour (yes, I'm a good friend). Then we went over to Tennyson Street, which is v. near my airbnb, and shopped in an adorable children's bookstore that is right across the street from another bookstore that doubles as a bar/event space. Any block that can sustain two independent bookstores is a good block, even if they're probably super judgey about romance.

Then, Katie went home to start her evening, and I picked up some takeout pizza and some margarita mix and took it over with me. This was the last time I'll see her before I leave, so we made the most of it - and by that I mean that we played with her children.

Then we said our (temporary) farewells, and I came back to my airbnb, where I talked to Sarah and also relaxed and also procrastinated for a couple of hours. And now I must sleep - goodnight!

Thursday, July 20, 2017

i've become so numb

I didn't sleep well last night - my stomach was full of acid, and waking up made my thoughts churn. Between Spinster Honeymoon and my potential new historical book (which doesn't have a plot, but does have a title and a cover), and the secret Iowa project I've wanted to work on for a decade and have never started, and my desire to build a reputation as more of a thought leader for women who want to make bold career changes, and my totally conflicting desire to sit around without pants and read all day....I have a lot on my mind at the moment.

But, I realized that I haven't woken up in the middle of the night with my stomach in knots in ages...possibly not since I lived in San Francisco (where I had a bed specifically designed to angle me upward like an octogenarian when that happened). So, despite all the many and varied opportunities and stories and risks in front of me, at least I can say that I'm generally happier and less stressed than I was a year ago...

sssanyway. Today didn't go according to plan. I woke up surly and stayed there - I had to take my car to the Toyota dealer for service, and because it was the majorest of the major services (120k), and there were all sorts of things to be done to it, I am apparently spending $1000 on it. When I balked at this under the pretense of not wanting to leave my car there long enough to complete the work (also true), they gave me a rental car so that I could go back into town to get some work done (the dealership is like fifteen miles from downtown).

This, it turned out, was a good thing, since they called me at four p.m. to confess that they'd cracked the oil filter case or some shit and that they would of course replace it for free, but that they didn't have the part in stock and need to keep my car until tomorrow. At that point, they also said that I might want to consider replacing my water pump, but I politely declined since I would rather buy $900 worth of shoes if given the choice than spend it on a water pump that may or may not need replaced yet (and I suspect I can find a cheaper place to replace that if it becomes necessary).

sssanyway again. I did get a lot of work done today - when I drove back into Denver this morning, I went straight to Platform T (where I had some good times last week), and camped out with a gluten free breakfast sandwich and an iced coffee and an iced tea until I was floating on caffeine. All that work was super solid, which made me happy. Then I came back to the house and worked for a bit more, but I slacked off at 4:30 and met Katie for a drink and a snack at Avanti. This was where we went when I first got into town, and we had the same bartender (a delightfully dirty jhokester), and it all felt v. lovely. Of course we got into a deep discussion about the 1980s farm crisis, as we are wont to do - don't all of you talk about massive economic disasters and vanishing ways of life over happy hour?

Then I came back to my airbnb and spent the last four hours in varying states of wanting to go to bed but not letting myself go to bed before a respectable hour. But the respectable hour (11pm) is upon me, so it's time to call it. Goodnight!

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

i want your soul

Too tired to blog...I got up this morning and drove to Colorado Springs to see Barbara and discuss writing and life and new ideas over lunch, which was totally delightful. Then I spent too much time shopping for RWA - when it's the one chance in a year that I have to get dressed up like I'm going to a 'real' job, I want to make it count. By the time I was done with all my errands, traffic from the last mall back to my airbnb was awful, and it took almost an hour to drive twenty miles (still better than San Francisco, but barely).

But I spent the evening recovering - Sarah and I walked down to Tennyson and found dinner and drinks at a bar called West End Tap House. I had a burger with a gluten free bun that was totally delightful, along with a boulevardier and a shared order of truffle fries and a lot of conversation, and I enjoyed every minute of it.

But at this point, I'm totally wrecked, and I need to get up and accomplish things in the morning - goodnight!

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

hurts so good

As much as I would like to be getting actual work done, I spent most of today getting ready for my upcoming conference. That means laundry, trying on clothes, evaluating whether there's anything I need, etc., etc....all made more complicated by the fact that I don't have a home. But I brought a ton of clothes here in the back of my car for exactly an exercise such as today's, and I've mostly pieced together what I need to take (dresses and fun hot-weather clothes for Orlando next week, followed immediately by cool-weather clothes suitable for lounging and walking dogs and writing in Berkeley).

However, I still spent a lot of time running errands today. I first went to the coworking space and worked for a couple of hours, but then I snuck out to meet Katie at the mall for some retail therapy. I was v. v. good and didn't buy the sunglasses I tried on (there's sadness in my heart tonight), but I found some pajama/lounge bottoms on sale at Nordstrom, and I also picked up some shampoo/conditioner at the Aveda store, and I picked up the bras I'd ordered yesterday via the Nordstrom anniversary sale. I still have to go to a different Nordstrom tomorrow to pick up something else, but all in all, this was fairly efficient.

Of course, it was lovely to sneak out for a lunch break with Katie - while I expect that she'll tire of my evil influence at some point, so far she seems quite willing to keep hanging out with me, so I'm milking it for all it's worth. We eventually parted ways and I came back to the coworking space, with a stop at Chipotle for lunch (hopefully sans salmonella, although that would help me to lose the weight I put on in London/Venice/general springtime shenanigans). I worked for awhile longer (mostly photoshop), and then I took off for good to get a massage. It was the first massage I've had since Bali, and I felt like my neck really needed it - my neck has been better than I was expecting when it flared up on Sunday, but I'm trying to be super careful with it. I think I liked the massage, although she went super deep on some tender areas - if I die of a punctured artery in my sleep, I blame her.

But all in all it felt great, so I came home and tried to extend the bliss. There wasn't much bliss to be had, since I had to try on clothes and do laundry and take care of kitchen matters - but I did take some time to watch two episodes of 'Great British Bake Off', which was so very British that it was almost ridiculous how British it was. And now I'm desperate for sleep - goodnight!

Monday, July 17, 2017

only fools fall in love

I should have gone to bed an hour ago, but I chose to mess around in my journal and online instead - oops. Today was v. nice and highly productive, though. I got up fairly quickly, got ready, made some eggs, and was at the coworking space before 9:30, where I found Katie declaring that she needed to slog all day. Of course, that meant we took a break for lunch to check out a new crepe place down the street. It was #worthit, though - we split a salmon crepe and an italian-inspired crepe (tomatoes, mozzarella, bacon) that tasted a little like a pizza, and they were both delish (and gluten free!). And we caved and had a dessert crepe because we watched them make one and we couldn't resist the strawberries, blueberries, and nutella.

But break time had to come to an end, so we walked back (bitching the entire way about how hot it was and how strenuous the walk was, since we're Iowans at heart and Iowans never walk anywhere). I spent the afternoon getting a ton of stuff done, and I was v. happy with that. After work, I ran over to Katie's house (she left before me, but she'd gotten there before me), said hi to the girls, and conned my way into eating some of their supper (this was unintentional!). Then I grabbed my groceries (which I'd left there while transferring between airbnbs since I didn't want to leave food in my broiling car while moving), picked up Sarah at a workout class she'd gone to, and came back to my airbnb, where I did some dishes and worked until I was too tired to work anymore.

And now, on that boring note, it's time for bed - goodnight!

Sunday, July 16, 2017

when you're in texas look behind you

No news of note to report today - I woke up at ten after sleeping late to recover from the weekend, and then I was sitting in the living room minding my own business and reading through my journal when my neck started to hurt like I'd somehow pinched a nerve just sitting there. It was brutally bad, so I spent most of the rest of the morning lying in bed with a heating pad (which I'd conveniently bought when I hurt my shoulder three weeks ago). I definitely looked like a total princess, since the room I'm staying in has a sleigh-style bed and I was propped up on pillows, but it was the only thing I could do that helped, so leave me alone.

Eventually, I got up and decided that the rest of my body needed to move even if my neck didn't. So, Sarah and I walked ten minutes or so to the main strip of shops/restaurants in this neighborhood (on Tennyson) and went to a super lovely coffee place (Allegro). We sat in the sun while trying to get as much shade as possible and enjoyed our coffees, and I'm glad that I got out of the house for a bit, even if it didn't help my neck...

Then we came back here, and I crawled back into bed with my heating pad and called my parents. They talked for an hour and a half, which is longer than usual (to be fair, I also talked, so it's all our faults). Then, in deference to my neck I skipped making dinner and instead ordered Indian takeout - I haven't had Indian in way too long, and it was way too good, which means now I'm craving Indian all the time again like the addict I am. I also talked to Sarah for quite awhile, but at some point I needed to stop sitting on the couch, so I retreated to my room and spent more time on my laptop than I should have.

And now, I'm going to pop some more ibuprofen and hope this neck thing miraculously resolves itself overnight - goodnight!

Saturday, July 15, 2017

any wrong you do he's gonna see

I'm so so tired. Last night, as you may have predicted, was rough - I got five hours of sleep in Katie's guest room, almost all of which was fitful and disturbed, before waking up at seven and dragging myself out of the house like some kind of thief. The only thing I stole, though, was whatever still lurked in my liver, so she should thank me for taking it so that she didn't imbibe it all herself.

I got back to my airbnb and promptly took a nap, then showered and finished packing and cleaned up and vacated around ten. I had to drive to the airport then - my friend Sarah, whom I met in Bali, came out to spend the next week here, and so I picked her up at the airport so that we could commence our reunion as early as possible. First up was brunch at Revelry - it was super tasty, but we were both regretful that we didn't get the baked potato with lobster and bacon, since that seems like a much better idea than huevos rancheros (even if huevos rancheros are statistically proven to end my hangovers faster than any other).

Then we found our airbnb and checked in - it's a super cute, surprisingly spacious two-bedroom Craftsman style house about a mile from Katie's, and I'm already in love. We immediately left again to stock up on groceries, but we were both in dire need of naps (Sarah flew from the east coast and I was still recovering from Katie), so we each got a bit of sleep before getting ready.

Our evening activity was a girls' night out with Katie. We went to Lola, which is an upscale hipstery Mexican place - the guac was great, my chicken enchiladas were excellent and unusual, and my (three) spicy jalapeno margaritas were perfect. Well, the one that came out tasting like we'd been baited and switched with cucumber wasn't perfect, but they remade that round for us, so #noregrets.

Of course, any time two or more Iowans get together, we are required by law and custom to reminisce about our home state as much as possible (Ritu and Bill and anyone who has had the misfortune of dining with us can attest to that). So, Sarah got to hear allllll sorts of stories about #smalltownlife - religion, water quality, a crazy gay dude evading property taxes, etc., etc.

We eventually vacated Lola and went around the block to Linger, where we sat on the roof deck and had frosé (apparently a thing now and I'm too old for this shit). It was surprisingly chilly for Denver tonight, but it was still gorgeous up on the roof, and we joked a lot about Walker Texas Ranger (as one does). Also, Katie and I strung together the perfect long joke about the dude who was farting next to me, Pa Ingalls, and fever and ague - you had to be there, but I'm recording it here so that future biographers will wonder what magic they missed.

And now I'm too exhausted to keep typing - but it was a super fun night, made even more fun by the fact that Katie and Sarah liked each other and so I didn't have to kill one of them to support the other. What a relief. Goodnight!

i know why you chasing all the headlights

No blogging - I spent the evening hanging out with Katie, which started super tame (soup! brushing little girls' hair! watching videos about underwater life!) and then turned into lots of adult conversation in the basement until two a.m., which means we're going to be fucking wrecked tomorrow when her kids wake up at seven like the little angel monsters they are. And then I'll have to go back to my Airbnb, pack, check out, and then go to a new Airbnb - more info tomorrow. Goodnight!

Thursday, July 13, 2017

we sweat for a nickel and dime, turn it into an empire

Another lovely day in Colorado, and I'm already trying to ignore the fact that I'll have to pack up and leave soon. I slept a little later than planned, but I still got up in time to eat breakfast and pack a lunch and do similarly vital things before going to the coworking place. Katie was there today, but I successfully did some actual work without letting her distract me (or, more honestly, without letting me use her as an excuse to be distracted). However, we did take a break to walk down the street for coffee, and we also ate our lunches together, so that was all delightful.

But I had to leave a little after three, which was earlier than usual - I had happy hour plans north of Denver (closer to Boulder) with Chris and Natasha. They are a blast from the past - Chris and I were in India together, and Natasha and I worked really closely together when I worked for the big boss, since she was the big boss's admin. I also went to their wedding way back in the day, but they moved to Boulder five years ago, so we haven't had a chance to get together since then.

Sadly, Chris ended up with a last minute meeting that conflicted with our 4pm meetup, but Natasha and I grabbed a drink and snack before going back to their place. She picked up their boys (aged 5, 3, and 8mo) on the way, and we spent some quality time catching up while feeding the kids. It was great to see them - I really liked Chris and Natasha when we spent more time together, and I predict that I'll see them more often if (when) I (eventually) move out here (hedging much?).

But I left their place around seven so that they could engage in bathtime, and I drove back to Denver, made a late supper since my snack wasn't doing it (more eggs and hash browns, yum), and then watched the last two episodes of The Crown. I thought they were brilliant, all in all - I think they did a great job of capturing what must be such a lonely life and position, and how it would blight all one's relationships, as one character said in the last episode. And John Lithgow's Churchill was great. I recommend!

Now, though, I should sleep so that I can get even more work done tomorrow - goodnight!

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

god save the queen

I had a great day, all in all, although a lot of it involved bingeing. I binged on social media this morning, and I binged on four episodes of 'The Crown' tonight (and I binged on hash browns with the eggs I made for dinner because I was feeling lazy and in need of some potatoes).

But I also got some good work in - I wrote for four hours at Platform T this afternoon, which was great. I also walked there and back - it was cooler today, since it seemed to be threatening rain all day, and so the walk wasn't the apocalyptic endeavor it would have been yesterday.

And now, although this is boring, I must sleep - goodnight!

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

hoping to find some long forgotten words or ancient melodies

Today felt like two days in one. I spent most of the morning overindulging in social media and schadenfreude, just like the good old days when I had a home and nowhere pressing to be. But I had to rally eventually so that I could meet Katie for lunch - there are a bunch of great food trucks that set up shop downtown during the summer months, so she suggested that we meet James there. However, her coworkers all decided to come as well, which made for a v. different, entertaining-in-a-bizarre-way vibe. I think I liked them all, but one of them managed to power through all the worst questions I get as a writer in the shortest amount of time possible (1. do you sell enough to make a living? 2. how many copies have you sold? 3. [insert somewhat condescending commentary on bodice rippers] 4. how did you start writing - but really, how did you *actually* start writing?). She obviously didn't mean any harm and was actually interested, so I didn't take offense, but it was a reminder that at some point in the future I need to develop a compellingly uncompelling version of my life so that I don't have to answer questions about writing....

But that's an extreme #firstworldproblem, especially since I'm lucky to be able to make a living from writing, so I'll suck it up and move on. Lunch was really great, all in all - it was warm out, I liked the people, Katie is always lovely, and my food was good. I picked some bison from an American Indian food truck - it was supposed to come on frybread, which probably would have made it spectacular, but I can't have frybread, so the wild rice substitute had to suffice. The bison was delish, though - braised and shredded, with cheese and sour cream and a tasty corn salsa. But there were a lot of other trucks that looked wonderful as well. Clearly this is another area in which Denver is more than capable of meeting my needs.

When we were done with lunch, I drove to Platform T and worked all afternoon - first with an iced tea, then with a cold brew iced coffee. The writing went kind of well, although I was having doubts today...but that's standard at this point, so just ignore my whining. Then I came home and talked to [censored], since I wanted to hear about his first [censored] and his new [censored] and all the other developments in his new [censored]. After that, I ate dinner (leftover beef tacos), turned on the tv, and watched like five episodes of an old season of Top Chef while answering emails that were almost as old. I am really not good at email, but you all know that, right?

And now I must sleep and hope no distracting news breaks overnight since I want to write tomorrow - goodnight!

Monday, July 10, 2017

do you see it clearer or are you deceived

I had a great day - I woke up slightly later than planned, but early enough to shower, eat breakfast, and make it out the door and to the coworking space before 9:30. Katie was already there since she's far more diligent than I am, so we chatted briefly, and I attempted to get some work done.

All in all, it was a v. successful attempt - I worked more hours on the story than I have in weeks, and I enjoyed the brainstorming and daydreaming and writing. I took a break to have lunch with Katie (we each brought our own stuff and ate it in the kitchen while laughing about ludicrous Civil War conspirators), but mostly worked all afternoon.

And then, when it was time to stop, I went back to Katie's with her, hung out with her and the girls (and James, who arrived just in time to take care of the grill), and ate dinner with them. Then I watched shark videos with the kids, who will hopefully not have nightmares tonight, and talked a little more with the grown-ups before it was time for the girls to go to bed and for me to come back to my airbnb.

Now, though, I need to sleep so I can recreate this magic tomorrow - goodnight!

Sunday, July 09, 2017

i ain't giving you a dollar

I think it's time for bed - I spent all day replenishing my introvert reserves, but now it's important to sleep so that I can pour my reserves into my writing tomorrow. Today started off early - I woke up at six so that I could get ready and take Aunt B to the airport so that she could catch a flight back to the city of corn (aka Des Moines). We said our farewells at the airport, and then I drove into Denver to pursue a day of solitude and preparation...

First up, I desperately needed breakfast. I found a place called Wild Eggs - it was more fast-casual than I was expecting (although that's not the right term, since there was a wait staff, but it felt like some weird amalgamation of fast-cazh, diner, and bistro based on the menu/prices/ambience). My food was good, but not great, but good enough that I left happy.

Then I found a tea and coffee place nearby that made me SUPER HAPPY - Platform T has a lot of delish teas (including the cold brew Earl Grey iced tea I had), and lots of coffees, and an interesting-looking food menu. I predict several visits to this place in the near future, since I'm a ten minute walk from it. I journaled there for an hour or two, and was quite content to just stay there...

...but at some point I had to vacate so that I could check into my airbnb. I got a one-bedroom this week so that I can hunker down and work and occasionally not wear pants (okay, the biggest motivation is that I'm tired of wearing pants). The place is super cute, and it's in a neighborhood that I'm checking out as a possible move location...so far so good.

After I checked in, I ran a couple of errands, including a trip to Whole Foods. I realized tonight that I don't think I've cooked dinner for myself since sometime in London, which was three months ago. I've helped other people cook, and I've watched other people cook, and I've made a lot of scrambled eggs/omelettes/avocado toast...but it's no wonder I'm feeling a) in need of some hermit time and b) kind of gross and unhealthy since I'm eating a strange combo of things all the time.

So, I bought groceries, then came back and called my parents (they're good, thanks for asking!). Then I went to Target to buy food storage containers, since there aren't any in this place and I wanted to prep stuff for the week. Then I came back and made a taco salad, which was super tasty if I do say so myself. It's a good thing I thought it was tasty, since there's enough for three more meals...

And then I finished unpacking, and now I'm going to go to bed oddly early in hopes of getting up tomorrow and hitting the words fresh. Goodnight!

Saturday, July 08, 2017

look in the mirror, what do you see

I need to go to bed immediately - I v. stupidly (or kindly, depending on your choice of adjectives) volunteered to take Aunt B to the airport tomorrow morning, which means I need to get up at 6am, which is entirely too early for my body clock. But today was great - I slept in, and then I actually wrote for a couple of hours, and it felt so good to get into the story again that I may be excited about it (shock, gasp).

Then I spent the rest of the afternoon packing up all my stuff, taking care of laundry, cleaning, etc., etc. And then we went out for dinner at a restaurant in Castle Rock - I had gluten free pasta, which was way more carbs than I probably wanted, but the carbonara sauce was delightful. They forgot to bring my chicken with it, which was mildly annoying, but I managed to avoid inhaling all the pasta before they showed up with the chicken, so I survived. And the two glasses of wine I had with it smoothed out any annoyance I may have felt over the chicken debacle, so #winning.

Then we came home, and Aunt B and Uncle B went to their neighbors' house while I spent an hour and a half or so editing a writing thing for a friend of mine. And now it's time for bed - goodnight!

Friday, July 07, 2017

i'm only human after all

I meant to get more done today than I did, but I crossed some things off my to-do list that had been lingering there for months, so I'll totally take it. In an effort to go someplace where I could concentrate, I drove into Denver and went to the coworking space where Katie works. I got there I little later than I did on Wednesday, and we promptly went down the street for iced coffees. Iced coffees at a totally charming, cute, hipstery bakery/cafe are $2.25 each, which is reason #812 why everyone in SF should move here (actually, not everyone, since that would ruin it, but I think twenty or so of you should consider it).

Then we both worked, or pretended to, until lunch (Katie brought leftovers, I brought a v. tasty sandwich). At that point I was really thinking that I was going to screw around and waste the rest of the day, but I forced myself to concentrate and ended up doing some great stuff, so that was a wonderful surprise. But Katie and I still held to our prearranged date to get pedicures, which I was in dire need of (Katie actually pointed in shock to the amount of dead skin the woman grated off my feet, which means I made need to add some pumice to my nomadic necessities).

Then we went back to Katie's place, where Katie made dinner (a tasty frittata and some watermelon) while we hung out with the girls. James eventually came home, and we all ate and talked and generally laughed too much before I decided to go back to Castle Rock instead of hanging out while they put the girls to bed. When I got here, I did some laundry, journaled some more, etc., and then made plans with Aunt B and Uncle B for tomorrow night.

And now I must sleep - tomorrow I have to pack up my stuff in preparation for moving on down the road (my dramatic way of saying I'm going back to Denver to stay starting Sunday). Goodnight!

Thursday, July 06, 2017

you don't know how lucky you are boys

Too tired to blog - I got approximately four hours of sleep last night, and then got up at 5:30am to go on a hike with Aunt B. We went to a state park near her place, and it took a bit of time to jockey ourselves into position (we left my car at one end and took her car to the other), but the hike itself was great. It was three miles, not too difficult, and no rattlesnakes in sight despite copious warnings. The advantage of getting there so early is that we didn't boil to death in the heat of the rocks, so getting up was worth it (although I really didn't think it was worth it when my alarm went off).

Then I stopped at Starbucks on the way back to the house, and then I made avocado toast to satisfy my hipster cravings. Eventually I showered and Aunt B and I went to the outlet mall nearby - turns out they have a Lucy store, which is my favorite brand of workout/athleisure gear, so I got a pair of capris, a tank, and a sweatshirt and was rendered very happy for as long as the 'I just bought something' endorphins remained in my bloodstream.

When we got back to the house, I alternated between watching 'The Crown', working, napping, and journaling until it was time for dinner - a v. delish pork chop courtesy of Uncle B (it was a bona fide Iowa Chop, since they brought them with them from Iowa) and some twice-baked potatoes and salad courtesy of Aunt B. I read for a little bit after dinner, and then hung out in the kitchen and talked to Becky until it was time to go to bed.

And now, that's exactly what I'm going to do...goodnight!

Wednesday, July 05, 2017

don't put your blame on me

I had a delightfully productive day despite feeling like I was overheating for almost all of it. I woke up this morning after sleeping surprisingly poorly last night (or not surprisingly, since I'd had way too much wine). Then I drove into Denver - I had a date with Katie to work at her coworking place, and this was a great decision, because I was extremely productive. Of course, I need to be similarly productive for the rest of time, but I'll take today as a good start.

We had a break for lunch (I grabbed a v. tasty burger from the place across the street), and then I worked the rest of the afternoon (with another break for me to go to Tattered Cover to pick up a book). I parted ways with her around five and drove back to Castle Rock, where I had supper with Aunt B and Uncle B - Aunt B made some awesome fish tacos, which I'm going to have to replicate as soon as I have a home again. Then we watched the first two episodes of 'The Crown', which I've been meaning to watch forever, and it became clear that I know waaaaay too much about the royal family.

And now I need to sleep - we're apparently going on a hike tomorrow, which requires waking up super early to avoid getting heatstroke. Goodnight!

Tuesday, July 04, 2017

i'm still waiting for it

So much for detoxing...I blame Aunt B and the magnum of red wine she took to her neighbor's 4th of July party, which we drank almost all of. The rest of my day was great and v. relaxing (I got 9+ hours of sleep! which felt like a super indulgence since it's been a long time since I didn't have to get up and be anywhere), but now I need to sleep so that I can get up and try detoxing again tomorrow. Goodnight!

Monday, July 03, 2017

save the buckshot turn up the band

As you may have guessed from last night's post, I spent today paying the wages of my sins. I had the worst hangover I've had in many months - probably the only hangovers in the past year that compare with this one also involved Ritu and Bill (and that guy I had five bottles of rosé with last summer), so I guess today was par for the course.

Yesterday was great, though - I woke up at 8am in Colorado Springs feeling mildly hungover and sleep deprived (I'd had a lot of rosé with Barbara on Saturday since it was our last night together, but it was nothing like yesterday), but I managed to shower and pack my stuff and load my car and drive to Denver in time to have brunch with some friends who were in town. Ritu/Bill, Chris/Connie, and Steph/Jon were all at a wedding in Boulder this weekend, but I don't know the bride very well and so wasn't invited. But we managed to get together for breakfast at a place called Marlowe's - it was surrounded by some v. interesting people-watching, since there appeared to be both Denver ComicCon and some sort of little person gathering going on nearby.

My friends were all delightful, as per usual, and the brunch went all too fast. Chris and Connie (and their adorable children) had to leave for the airport and Steph/Jon went back to Boulder to see family, but Ritu and Bill and I were in it for the long haul. I was trying to be good (I know, you've heard that before, but really!), but it's hard to be good when the plan is to hang out in drink-type places for eleven hours straight...

We started off at Old Major, where I limited myself to one cocktail (a pimms cup) and some charcuterie (if I'm pleased with anything about yesterday, it's that we didn't gorge ourselves with eighteen meals). Then we got ice cream at Little Man, then had drinks at a place called Occidental (which is trying to be a punk bar, but it's trying a little too hard - but my drinks were decent).

Then we went next door to this speakeasy we discovered called Williams and Graham - it looks like a bookshop (which is why we initially looked at it), but the bar is hidden behind a fake bookcase. We were there when they opened and got in right away, and it was really awesome - I had three different cocktails (a boulevardier, a pisco sour, and another drink with egg whites that was quite yummy). The problem with me and cocktails is a) I love them, b) I want to try them all, and c) once I've had two, I want to have ten....

...which is pretty much what happened. Bill's friend Zac joined us at the speakeasy, and we all had an 8pm reservation at Root Down, which is one of my favorite restaurants in Denver. The food was excellent, as per usual, and my drinks there (the Don Draper, which was another whisky cocktail) were delish (and bordering on unnecessary). Then we ended up at Avanti, where I had a couple of v. ill-advised old fashioneds. Last call was earlier than we were ready to stop hanging out, so we went back to Katie's place and stood around in the kitchen and played some music-related trivia until it was time to send them all packing so I could sleep.

But I didn't get enough sleep, and this morning was an exercise in pain. The only silver lining is that the extreme relaxation I got to yesterday seems to have helped my shoulder - it definitely didn't hurt as much today, and while I don't think alcohol is really a solution, I'm certainly going to try to figure out how to stay relaxed so it can heal.

Anyway, I eventually showered and packed everything and met up for a late lunch with Ritu and Bill at a place I found called the Bacon Social House. You might have guessed that bacon features heavily on their menu. I thought it was super tasty, although putting bacon inside your tater tots is perhaps unnecessary (but yummy). And Ritu got a gluten free pancake that was super good and momentarily made me miss the sugary carb-bomb breakfasts that I mostly no longer have.

Sadly, we had to part ways before I could fully convince them to move to Denver - it probably doesn't help that I spent last night rambling about moving to Iowa and running for office, and so now they're not totally convinced I'll be here if they move here. But I'm going to keep trying - and if any of the rest of you want to move to Denver, DO IT.

After I said goodbye to them, I drove down to Castle Rock - my aunt and her scandalous pirate husband are here this week, so I'm hanging out with them. It already feels so good to have unpacked a bit, since I'll be here for a few nights - I need some downtime so I can write, and this feels perfect. I called my parents when I got here, and then Aunt B and I went to the grocery store and stocked up. We had a light dinner (mostly cheese) and hung out way past everyone's bedtime, and now I need to sleep so I can finish my recovery and get ready for tomorrow. Goodnight!

she was blinded by the light

I've been drinking since 1pm, and it's 2am now...so you should guess that I was hanging out with either a) Adit or b) Riturani. In this case, it was Ritu. After many cocktails and many jhokes, I can't see particularly straight, so I'm going to sleep and try to type again tomorrow - goodnight!

Saturday, July 01, 2017

with a rebel yell she cried more more more

Too tired to blog - I had a great day in the Springs, which ended in me and Barbara drinking a lot of wine, and now I need to sleep so I can get up tomorrow for a blast from a very different past. goodnight!

Friday, June 30, 2017

I am inimitable

I have hit my introvert wall so hard... It was bound to happen eventually, I suppose. If anything, it's a wonder I've made it this long staying in other people's houses and successfully refraining from murdering them and everything they love. It helps that everyone I've stayed with is truly delightful, so the introvert wall has nothing to do with them and everything to do with my fragile energy levels and my desire to spend a morning lazing about with no pants.

But I think Barbara hit a wall today too, although hers was from not sleeping due to pet issues. So we didn't hang out very long before I went to Starbucks and she went for a walk. Unfortunately, most of what I wanted to do involved the internet, and Starbucks somehow didn't have internet, which made me sooooo cranky. Barbara joined me, and we talked and worked, and I actually got some really good stuff for spinster honeymoon....

Then we parted ways again, and I had a long lunch and journaled and did some light retail therapy. Then I went back to Barbara's and we worked some more, and then had an early dinner at a thai place. Then we had a glass of rosé in her garden, which is really delightful. And then I came home, with a stop to buy a heating pad and some icy hot strips for my shoulder, which is still hurting (although I probably tore my other rotator cuff by trying to put the icy hot bandages on it). And now I must sleep so I can regain some of my social energy for the next stint of seeing people I love - goodnight!

Thursday, June 29, 2017

that green light i want it

I had another great day in Colorado Springs. I woke up this morning to breakfast cooked by my airbnb host - I've never stayed someplace where I had a room in someone's house instead of renting the entire place, but this was the most convenient option and it's working out really well (read: breakfast was tasty and they haven't harvested my organs yet).

Then Barbara picked me up and took me to her tai chi class, and now I know what old people are doing when they're waving their hands around in the park. It's more involved than that, and not everyone there was old, but I could see how it would be v. good for your body and your mobility (things that are currently falling apart for me after becoming a hobo who lives on wine and friendship). Then we went to the grocery store, and then we went back to her place and ate and talked and napped and worked, which is v. writerly of us.

We ended the day with a long writing/voice exercise - Barbara is a gifted teacher of voice stuff, so it was almost like I got a master class for one just because we were hanging out and playing with words. At some point I opened rosé to get through the emotions dredged up by the exercises, and so we drank and wrote and then she made tacos (yum yum yum), and we finished off the night and the wine by sitting out in the gardens watching a gorgeous light display (sunset followed by lightning) before I took a lyft back to my airbnb (a sentence that wouldn't have made any sense at all a decade ago).

And now I must sleep - goodnight!

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

love don't discriminate between the sinners and the saints

I'm in Colorado Springs, which is not Denver, but it's close enough that it wasn't a massive production to get here. I woke up this morning, said farewell (for now) to Katie, did a load of laundry, and then drove down here (with a quick Target stop on the way). My friend Barbara S lives here, and I'm v. eager for several days of writing, talking about writing, and ruminating about life with her.

So far, it's all pretty delightful. When I arrived, her puppies were *incredibly* excited to see me - the puppies are the reason I got an airbnb instead of staying with her, since I wasn't willing to be awoken at 4:30am by puppies wanting to go out. But after we let them play a bit, we went out for lunch, then went back to her place and talked all afternoon/evening (with a break for me to check in to my airbnb and buy some wine, of course). It's a sign of how much I love her that I really just wanted to keep talking even though I hit my introvert wall like a month ago...but that's been true of everyone I've hung out with recently, so either they're all great or my introvert wall needs to be tuckpointed asap, since it appears to be failing.

But now I need to sleep, and I really need to stop reclining in this bed in a way that's going to aggravate my shoulder again - goodnight!

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

we order different drinks from the same bars

Blogging from my phone because my computer is in the middle of a v. ill-advised update/reboot cycle and I want to sleep. My fucked up shoulder almost got the best of me today, but I seem to have treated it with a lot of ibuprofen and a couple of margaritas, so hopefully I can sleep tonight.

But today was great - great for friendship, and great for getting things done. Katie and I went to a coworking place that she frequents so I could check it out, and I got so much done there - I did some actual bonafide writing in the morning, and then got a lot of admin work done this afternoon that I'd been putting off forever. And I got to take a break in the middle to have a tasty omelette and a glass of rosé with Katie at a cafe down the street, which felt so lush and delightful. So, the coworking space is a winner, but I won't be in the neighborhood for the next week or two, so I probably won't get to indulge in its comfort for awhile...

Then we came home and Katie made supper, which was v. tasty (turkey burgers and sweet potatoes), and then I had a long call with my friend Maya while Katie and James worked on getting the kids ready for bed. I hadn't talked to Maya since something like November (how sad/embarrassing), so we were way overdue and it was fun to talk to her. Then I hung out with the girls and said goodnight to them, and then Katie and I (and later James) sat out back and enjoyed the night air (hopefully it doesn't cause fever and ague, but this isn't the Kansas Territory and I'm not Laura Ingalls Wilder, so I'm probably safe).

And now I must sleep - goodnight!

Monday, June 26, 2017

all those rumors, they have big teeth

I'm back in Denver after a very long day of travel. I woke up a little after seven, which gave me time to shower, finish packing (easy peasy), help clean the kitchen, and still have time to journal on the back porch for half an hour, so that made me feel pretty smug. Then we left the house and drove to Sedona for brunch - we'd exhausted the v. limited eating options in the Sedona-adjacent town where our rental house was, and it was either DQ for breakfast or drive to Sedona. Sedona, obviously, won, and we had a really great brunch there - I thought the food was good but not great, but the view of the red rocks was perfect, so overall it was a win.

Then we all wandered around for an hour or so before we realized that none of us want to buy crystals and Sedona is somehow the only town in the world that makes its whole living off selling rocks. So, we parted ways with Jess, who lives in Arizona and was driving home from Sedona, and then Grace, Jenn and I drove back to the Phoenix airport. This took a couple of hours through a scorched hellscape and 110+ degree heat, but it was entirely uneventful. I dropped them off at their terminal, took the rental car back, and had an hour and a half to kill after going through security, so I sat at a bar and ate a burger and had two glasses of wine and wrote/worked, and I was, again, feeling pretty smug...

...but that smugness ended when my plane left the gate on time, taxied to the runway, and...stopped. There was some mechanical issue, and they returned to the gate, and we ended up leaving two hours later. Bleh. Also, sometime after arriving at the airport and sitting down at the bar, I mysteriously destroyed my left shoulder, and I can barely lift my arm above my head to take off my clothes, so that made for a highly unpleasant flight as my shoulder got stiffer and stiffer after sitting in my airplane seat for 4+ hours instead of 2.

So, after lugging myself and my stuff through the Denver airport, finding my car, and getting to Katie and James's at 11pm instead of 9pm, I'm surly and sore and ready for bed. Hopefully sleep will magically fix everything - goodnight!

threading the needle

Blogging on my phone so this will be brief - today was my last full day of my retreat, and it went so well. I woke up and journaled outside before the sun got too crazy, and then did a bit of work inside. We all took a break for lunch, which meant going to Dairy Queen because Grace loves it (I wasn't complaining, since I got a Heath Blizzard for the first time in many years).

Then I worked all afternoon, and I'm still falling in love with my spinster honeymoon while still being scared by it. We also did a lot of tarot character development, which was super fun. We were going to go out for dinner, but we were all still pretty full from DQ, so we went to the grocery store to forage, which meant my dinner was a frozen dinner of chicken tikka masala and the rest of the wine I opened the other night. And then we gossiped until I was too tired/happy/bitchy to keep going.

And now it's time for bed so I can fly back to Denver tomorrow - goodnight!

Saturday, June 24, 2017

i want something just like this

Long day, not quite enough actual writing - but I got up and journaled rather than checking twitter, which was way better for me, and then I spent most of the day doing character background work for Spinster Honeymoon. At three p.m., though, I had to stop so I could shower, and then we all went into downtown Sedona for the evening. We wandered around and looked at some shops, and had a super tasty, v. v. filling dinner at a Mexican place with multiple kinds of guacamole and some enchiladas that made me quite happy. The margaritas made me happy too, but everything together was a little too much, and now I feel like I have a food baby.

But I'll probably survive. After we wandered around some more, we came back and played Cards Against Humanity again (Grace won, after having never played before last night - she's a natural). And now I'm going to go sleep so that I can be more productive tomorrow, since it's our last full day here - goodnight!

Friday, June 23, 2017

born in arizona, moved to babylonia

I haven't been able to get internet on my laptop, which is probably for the best, so I'm typing this on my phone before turning in. Today went really well - I woke up and journaled outside before it got too hot, and then I dragged everyone to Starbucks for caffeine and food before I felt too hangry. Then we came back and I wrote for awhile... I'm getting back into spinster honeymoon and I think it's going to be great.

But we took a look break for lunch at a nearby brewery, which served great burgers. Then we grabbed some groceries and drove back here, and I worked the rest of the afternoon. This mostly involved character development, which mostly involved some tarot for my characters using a tarot for writers book, which was more helpful than you might have guessed.

But I stopped around six and talked to Grace while she cooked dinner for all of us. We enjoyed it together, and then we played cards against humanity, which was as ridiculous as always. And now I need to sleep - goodnight!

Thursday, June 22, 2017

I feel so close to you right now

Too tired to blog - I'm in Arizona, after an entirely uneventful flight. The drive was much more eventful - I picked up the rental car, then picked up Grace, and then we got totally lost trying to pick up Jenn (it was definitely a Google maps issue). Then we tried to drive to Sedona, but a massive wildfire had closed I-17, so we had to detour around it.

Did I mention it was 120F?

But we survived and made it to our cabin, where Jess was v happy to see us. Then we had a ridiculous dinner at the nearby casino, where I had enough margaritas to dull the pain of the drive. And then we gossiped at home, but I'm turning in before everyone else because I'm basically still on central time and am too tired to function. Goodnight!

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

are we in the clear yet

No blog tonight...I made it to Denver without incident and promptly reunited with Katie (by picking her up at the airport). We had a drink and some snacks at Avanti, as we often had before, and then spent the evening hanging out with her kids (and James, when he got home).

But I'm exhausted and I'm flying to Phoenix tomorrow, since my travel schedule makes no sense at all. So, it's time for bed. Goodnight!

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

find me and follow me through corridors, refectories

I am sitting in a hotel room in North Platte, Nebraska, which is a town I have driven through many times before. What I had not done before is drink thirteen ounces of so-so wine at Ruby Tuesday, which is what I did tonight - I was having some deep thoughts about Spinster Honeymoon, and by that I mean that I thought about journaling and instead spent too much time messaging people on twitter. But twitter is part of the plot of that book, so let's call it research and move on, shall we?

When I woke up this morning, I was still in Iowa. But it didn't take long to get ready to go - and it was all v. desultory since I wasn't on a specific timeline. So, that gave me time to have breakfast with my parents (my dad made hashbrowns in addition to the usual bacon and eggs, so I think he really does love me!). Then I said my farewells to them and headed west (well, north first, then west for hours and hours). The Iowa portion of my journey was entirely uneventful. Right after I crossed the Nebraska border, I discovered that tornadoes had passed through there recently - I saw some pretty gnarly remnants of what used to be machine sheds twisted into post-modern art shapes, and I had to take a detour because some of the electric poles had been blown into the highway. It's incredible what a tornado can do - one of the poles I saw had been snapped at the base, but then deposited, still vertical, in the field nearby, and the lines hadn't been severed. Bizarre.

After that, things got super boring - Nebraska is kinda the worst for scenery, and as I've said before, Nebraska has the longest stretch of interstate that is perfectly straight (seventy miles that doesn't deviate by more than three inches). But I took a break when I got to Kearney to see the museum inside the Archway - I've driven under it many times, since I-80 passes underneath it, but I've never stopped. They had some good exhibits about the history of the North Platte trails - the Oregon, California, and Mormon trails all went through Kearney (then Fort Kearney) to Fort Laramie, where they split off to their different destinations. And the transcontinental railroad and I-80 followed in the same path - so many decades of western expansion went through there, and they did a decent job representing it. It was a little heavy on theatrics and light on facts, but it was really nicely done and I'm glad I stopped.

Then I drove to North Platte, where I decided to spend the night - I could have pressed on, but I was tired and the pickings between here and Denver are slim (although I like Ogallala as much as the next girl, I guess). So I checked in and walked next door to Ruby Tuesday, where I ate some chicken and drank the aforementioned wine, which was better than I expected and not as good as I wanted. Then I came back here and talked to Katie for an hour, since it was too much to expect us to wait to start catching up until we see each other tomorrow. And now I need to sleep - goodnight!