Binghamton

My problem with travel

I love going places. It relaxes me to go to other realms, walk around, and see how other people live. It thrills me to hear about other people’s way of live, see the sights they’ve grown accustomed to, and buy things from their local stores.

Ctrip

Being a tourist, I love that.

My problem is that I live in those moments fully. That means that I remember it, but not in the way others might.

Husband and I recently went slightly west. This year, we had planned to travel east and attend the huge summer party in Binghamton as a guest of Jefferson Rose, but that party was cancelled so our (and when I say “our” I mean Husband’s) vacation time was up for grabs. A “Hey I was remembering when we were there” email to my ex sister-in-law led to a “Buddy Guy is giving a concert in October, why don’t you come then” response and we had rudimentary travel plans.

Much was discussed, things were ruled out, but what we ended up with was a beautiful reenactment with variations of our first slightly west journey when the cat was a kitten. I think.

Anyway, when we went to Cleveland, we saw Michael Burke again. This time, it was calmer and less hurried. I got a tour of Berea, saw the house where Husband grew up in, walked around the town, bought a hat and explored this amazing riverside walk by myself.

Ftrip

 

Gtrip

 

I met a woman who I may-or may not-have previously encountered in my dreams. (Coming out of the Berea Historical Building as we were walking by, she arbitrarily started talking to us. Come to find out, she’d been big in Berea Theater scene and knew my mother-in law. Fine, right? Except I had a dream a few months earlier about running into one of Carol’s friends who asked me how she was doing and I thought, ‘well, you’re not such a great friend if you didn’t know she died almost a decade earlier.’)

The Barking Spider was frequented, as was The Cleveland Museum of Art.

 

Atrip

 

(Yes, that is a falling angel giving the finger) In the Cleveland Museum of Art, I did not heed Michael’s advice to take in a small amount of work, instead I ran from picture to portrait to sculpture and immersed myself with the almighty depth, breadth and longevity of the pieces and bought a lot of postcards. It is an amazing place, inside and out.

Etrip

I wasn’t aware of the chandelier (bad picture, I know) or that Cleveland had the largest bank lobby–The Huntington Bank. Cleveland’s nightlife is far more “happening” that I would have thought.

Dtrip

From there, it off to Indiana. We saw Buddy Guy in Elkhart’s Lerner Theatre. Great music and a beautiful space. (When I find the right cord, I’ll get the pictures off the camera.)

 

In Plymouth, we spent time visiting with Sue and Kevin. I got to see my niece and her family, my ex mother-in-law and the brilliant nurse, Nancy Coney. Husband and Kevin got the glass doors on the bookcases while Sue and I toured downtown. We got to listen to albums up in the sunroom and because life is just too funny, their neighbor’s Ford Galaxy 500 convertible started up and I got to take a ride in it to the Dairy Queen, which sadly, I’d forgotten about until I saw the picture of the car.

Btrip

On our way home, we stopped in Fort Wayne to see Chyo’s new place, then headed east. Cat was not impressed with our leaving, but I think she’s finally forgiven us–at least she isn’t as loud.

So, that’s the problem, I start to lose the details and nuisances that made the trip so interesting. *Sigh* I know, I’ll recall them when I write (I’m only down a day on NaNo) but the story I’m writing this time–the one that I plotted out, well, the characters have decided that the people I saw them ending up with don’t want anything to do with those people and there’s very little from my trip that relates to this new novel.

In my absence, the last round of edits from my editor arrived, so now I’m feeling out XO man to see if he and Girlfriend will have time to read it before they take off on a trip of their own.

Ah well, that is a sad little glimpse into the gorgeous problems (ones she loves) that this writer has gladly endured recently.

 

*These are my Creekside Reflections. Your experiences may vary.

 

 

 

 

Summer: Hot and Hard

Summer always seems to be filled with interesting beautiful opportunities, and hard, hot work. On Monday, I went to Burger King and met up with an old friend. He had put out a CD and since he lives in Gowanda, I didn’t see the need to pay postage. We had a lovely catch up and he signed my CD case. He’s putting together another collection and I wish him well on that project. (I’d link a website to plug him, but he doesn’t have one yet.)

On the 11th, I sat in the library and wrote 1500 words–a story and a partial flash. By the 14th, the story “Brown Eyed Bess” was sent out to three places. I don’t know where it came from, but it is good. I sent it to XO man. He loved it. I sent it to an honorary member of Ugly Babies. I asked, “Yes? Or is it lacking?” and received this response, “Yes. This is new, both in timeline and in voice. I like the location very much.”

When I started the celebration thread on Zoetrope, I asked a paraphrased question that Mary Akers had brought up in her office, “How can you tell whether what you’re writing is good or not?” Some people mentioned “flow” and while I understand that, that isn’t what I meant. When I was writing “Brown Eyed Bess,” I knew it was a good story. I can’t say why I knew, but I just took a look at the original draft (written in a font I’ve never used before) and while I polished the piece, the bones were there…and really good bones at that.

Husband and I usually get two loads of firewood per summer weekend and that takes up so much time. This year, after the initial two loads, Husband signed out the white dump truck from work on a Sunday and in two trips, got ten cords that are now sitting in the driveway. I put up the first row in the woodshed on Monday–just moving the wood left over from last year over, really. Yesterday, I put in the second row. I had plans to put up the third today, but I forgot that the picking up the pieces and putting them in the wheelbarrow is different from just moving wood over. So, I’m achy today and I don’t see that happening.

Instead, I’m packing. Since Husband is working in Cuba, we decided we’d stop in at Jeff Rose’s party. Tonight, Dog is going to a kennel. I’m getting up early and going with Husband on Friday. I’ll be camping out in a teacher’s lounge and reading. Then we’re driving to Binghamton, checking into the hotel and walking over to Mr. Rose’s place for a bit. On Saturday, we’re going to the museum, then the party and then home. I’m nervous! New people, which aren’t all that ne. I’ve interacted with them on Zoetrope for years. Mr. Budman is likely to be at the party. He is Editor of Vestal Review where my first flash was accepted. I don’t know why this makes me so nervous, but it does…

So, that is a roundup of my recent doings and upcoming weekend. I hope yours is fantastic and filled with no stress at all. Thanks for stopping by!

(These are just my reflections. Your experience may vary.)