Flat on my back across the back seat of my car, I watch the passing scenery fly by, such as it is from this vantage point. Telephone wires, the light spring green tops of newly budding trees, a flag pole. Trucks look like freight cars on a passing train and seem much closer than they normally do from the driver’s seat or riding shotgun, sitting up. I am laying down, my feet propped up on a small suitcase with a couple of sweaters on top to make my footrest more comfortable.
“We’re in Providence already?” I ask my husband as I notice the Independent Man atop the dome of the Rhode Island State Capital. He represents Roger Williams, an early proponent of religious freedom, and separation of church and state. Banished by the Pilgrims in Massachusetts for his “dangerous opinions”, Williams founded Rhode Island in 1636 as a refuge for religious minorities. He was followed by Anne Hutchinson, a spiritual advisor, midwife, and mother of fifteen. After she was excommunicated from the Massachusetts Bay Colony, Roger Williams encouraged Anne to come to Rhode Island where she and her followers established the colony of Portsmouth, a haven for religious freedom. And you wonder where my opinions come from? Such are the things Rhode Island school children learn at an early age.
Hubby confirms our location. We are headed to my sister’s house in Warwick, along the Narragansett Bay, to visit her and my parents. They live on the Warwick side of Pawtuxet Village. Scenes from my second novel, Take Me Home, blur by the window. The gas tanks along the port, the Johnson and Wales harbor front campus, two and three story tenements. Gone is the large red rooster who stood on the sidewalk in front of Saltillo’s Liquor Store but the giant blue termite still sits atop New England Pest Control along Route 95 at the Thurbers Avenue exit.
There is a reason I am flat on my back in the backseat. It is one of those sudden twists of fate, or should we call it a twist of ankles. Yesterday afternoon we visited my oldest daughter in Boston. She is coaching lacrosse at a private school so we watched the practice, then had lunch on a rooftop deck in Cleveland Circle followed by a walk along the reservoir. On our way back to the car I stepped off the sidewalk into a pothole and sprained both my ankles. An X-ray I had the next morning was inconclusive. There could be a metatarsal tear. I can barely walk.
I wrote that a week ago. Since then we know it is a metatarsal tear on the left ankle and a slight fracture on the right. When I do something I never do it halfway. This time I really fucked it up. My luck and my timing are impeccable, but we are managing. We survived Memorial Day Weekend at the Inn. Our youngest daughter is arriving June 11th to spend the summer with us. She is a hospitality management major who just finished her junior year at Johnson & Wales Denver so in addition to missing her and looking forward to her arrival, she is a very welcome guest.
Despite my unfortunate accident we’re very busy learning the ropes. Making beds, making reservations, making breakfast. The cell phone connection is spotty as we move from room to room, which wouldn’t be a big deal if i could move easily from room to room without the boot on my right foot and the very attractive flat shoe on my left. The shoe is hard and has no give, the boot rocks. I’ve never been very coordinated. I get cranky when I need something in another room and hate asking my husband for the thousandth time if he could get me a glass of water, a glass of wine, my phone, my comb. His patience has been amazing.
Tweeting and Instagramming have slowed down a bit. And blogging. Yes, the blogging. I like to blog. I enjoy writing about my silly mishaps and daily observations, but blogging takes time. After all, it’s a taste of my writing for the new reader. An opportunity to entertain and possibly sell some books. It needs to be good. Witty. Edited. It takes time, and time is in short supply at the moment.
The biggest question right now is, does a blog sell a book? I don’t think it necessarily does, and with my writing time limited during these summer months of weddings, graduations, weekend getaways, and road trips to the Inn I need to set priorities. The books are the priority and as always, I am writing because I’ve been bitten by the bug. I am addicted to putting words on the page and telling stories.
I have an idea for not one but two books. One has three thousand words already. The other has pages of character notes.
The consensus on how to sell books is to back down on the social media and spend your time writing more books. My experience confirms the fact blogs don’t necessarily sell books. I would like to think they do but the numbers don’t confirm this.
I just returned from the doctor’s office. I have four more weeks of this misery. The other night the temperature dipped to thirty degrees. My husband had to rescue the hanging plants from the porches. This afternoon it is hot and muggy and my calf inside the boot is very itchy. Yes indeed, I am back in New England. To quote Mark Twain, if you don’t like the weather just wait a minute.
For the several weeks until I’m back on my feet (yes that is plural) I will be taking a break from blogging. If you really feel the need to read some of my silly, irreverent ramblings or you’d like to prove me wrong about blogging (Lord knows I am often wrong), the books make wonderful beach reads. Or hammock reads. Airplane reads. Poolside reads. It’s summer. It’s time to read a good book.
And please, be careful where you step. Pay attention to the earth beneath your feet.
An accidental photo taken minutes before my fall:
And yes, I know. As my husband said, “You should have been wearing sneakers.”