Green's Hill-Amy Lane's Home - News

Wednesday, April 8, 2020

Status Report

*  The silkworms are, I regret to inform you, still here. Mate and I go on our mostly deserted walk in the park and when we get back to the car we spend a good five minutes divesting ourselves of the "nature".  In a not unconnected event, there are horny birds everywhere who--high off of silkworm snacking--think Netflix and Chill involves screaming "DO ME!" from the branch of every tree available.  And, in other news, this particular riparian woodland features warnings about rattlesnakes during the summer.

Ah, nature.

And in related news...

*  Me: So, Squishie, do you want to come walking with us?

   Squish: Is there still nature out there?

   Me: If you mean the silkworms, uh, yes. They seem to have gotten fatter.

   Squish: Hard pass. I'd rather do laundry. 


*  Me: So, ZoomBoy, do you want to come walking with us?
 
   ZB: Is there still nature out there?

   Me: Yes.

   ZB: Hard pass--staying home.

  Mate: Even if it means doing homework and mowing the lawn?

   ZB: I don't see silkworms on that lawn.

I never really thought of myself as a hearty pioneer type--Mate neither. But apparently our tolerance for fat little worms who dangle on invisible strings makes us heroes. Who knew?


*  TV in the past two weeks-- Psych, Leverage, and The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo trilogy in the original Swedish. (Also known as the Millennium trilogy, because that's the name of the main character's magazine.)  The Millennium trilogy is pretty stunning in the original language--I think I could actually watch them again.

* Audiobook: Alone in the Dark by Karen Rose

* e-Book: Rereading Stand in Place by Mary Calmes--I have her newest, and I'm looking forward to it, but Stand in Place makes me really happy. Forgiveness and kindness and reconnecting with roots without the bitter aftertaste--I'm a fan.

And as for the picture? Well, a reader posted in my FB group about how a local SPCA was having the employees draw pictures of people's pets as a fundraiser. No--the pictures weren't masterpieces--that was the point. Well, a reader decided to draw a picture of Geoffie from a picture I'd posted, and she sent it to me. *hugs chest* And I adore it so. It captures the essence of my little nuisance/beloved pet, and I've put it up by my computer. I couldn't love it more if it was Renoir :-)

Monday, April 6, 2020

Kermit Flail! YAYAYAYAYAYAYAYAYAYAYAY!!!

Hey all-- it's April, and I'm betting--wherever you are, whatever you are doing--you probably didn't imagine your March would turn out quite the way you'd planned.

Wherever you are, I hope you're healthy, staying sane, and escaping in all the safe ways--quiet walks (in mostly empty parks!), family game time, knitting--and, of course, our favorite, where it all began, READING!

We've got some new releases this month, from some old friends! I hope you all enjoy :-)

Jaime Samms has brought us a contemporary story--with an enchanted twist in Thief in the Light--but she's not the only one! Kim Fielding along with writing partner F.E. Feeley J.R. brings us contemporary horror in Hallelujah! and Kim all by herself brings another creepy shiver up our spine with a romantic twist in The Dance!  And R.L. Merrill joins the paranormal fun with her M/F offering, Healer!  I'm feeling a little left out actually! I"m the only one bringing you straight up contemporary with Shades of Henry--and I hope you love them all!



Thief in the Light

by Jaime Samms

Lucky Denver has wandering feet, sticky fingers and an unreliable moral compass—he’s never had a home and he’s not so sure he cares about what he’s missing.
Albert Kreed who runs a small-town B&B knows what a home should be. So does his home, The Oaks—aka Mildred—and she has some very definite opinions on who should stay and who should go.
Mildred wants Lucky to stay—and while Kreed is surprised, he can’t really blame the old girl. He’s getting sort of attached himself. Lucky might be fine with the house’s eccentricities, but he’s not so sure Kreed will be fine with the man attached to Lucky’s real name. When Kreed falls ill, Lucky needs to make a decision—wander away like he’s always done or stay and be his better self. Kreed’s hoping he’ll stay—and so is The Oaks, and Mildred has a way of getting what she wants.




 Hallelujah 


by Kim Fielding and F.E. Feeley Jr.

Can you hear it?

Whispering in the dark.

Secrets only the dark knows.

Joseph Moore, choir director for the First Baptist Church of Lenora, Nebraska, has secrets of his own. Terrible, lonely secrets. One that involves natural human desire. One that calls forth powers he cannot begin to understand. Both with the potential to destroy him and those he loves.

Now the world is changing. The darkness, the shadows, the ghosts, are closing in—and Joseph and his lover, Kevin, are being stalked by a merciless demon, hell-bent on possession.

Can you hear it now?

There in the dark.

It’s whispering your name.

Buy Here






The Dance

by Kim Fielding

The Dance blurb: After several deaths and near-deaths, chemist and introvert Bram Tillman wishes the last year would unhappen. Then a beautiful man shows up at his door, warning him that more danger lies ahead. Daniel Royer promises to use vodou ceremonies to help Bram discover what’s trying to kill him. But while Bram feels a growing attraction to Daniel, vodou spirits change Bram in unexpected ways.

Buy Here



Healer

by R.L. Merrill


From the award-winning author of Hurricane Reese comes a new supernatural romance that will make you swoon and shiver.


WANTED: Counselor for child trauma victims at scenic boarding school in northern Arkansas. Must have an open mind, be flexible, and be ready to travel at a moment's notice. Patience, extreme vigilance, and discretion required. Generous compensation guaranteed


Veteran teacher and counselor Delaney Frost accepts a job at Havenhart Academy and soon learns that not only are her new charges "gifted"-but that within her resides a power so rare and precious it can be used to heal others. When danger arrives at the academy gates, Delaney and her mysterious, yet alluring boss will fight to protect the children from a megalomaniac out for revenge and the destruction of all she holds dear. 








Shades of Henry

by Amy Lane

A Flophouse Story


One bootstrap act of integrity cost Henry Worrall everything—military career, family, and the secret boyfriend who kept Henry trapped for eleven years. Desperate, Henry shows up on his brother’s doorstep and is offered a place to live and a job as a handyman in a flophouse for young porn stars.


Lance Luna’s past gave him reasons for being in porn, but as he continues his residency at a local hospital, they now feel more like excuses. He’s got the money to move out of the flophouse and live his own life—but who needs privacy when you’re taking care of a bunch of young men who think working penises make them adults?


Lance worries Henry won’t fit in, but Henry’s got a soft spot for lost young men and a way of helping them. Just as Lance and Henry find a rhythm as den mothers, a murder and the ghosts of Henry’s abusive past intrude. Lance knows Henry’s not capable of murder, but is he capable of caring for Lance’s heart?



Thursday, April 2, 2020

Go-Go Boots and Zoomies

For once, I have something to report!
So, Steve and Dewey both had appointments yesterday. Now, normally I would have blown the appointments off--not the time to be hanging about the vets office, shooting the shit, right?  But Steve gets tartar buildup which can get infected quickly--and her appointment two months ago didn't go well--she spiked a fever and they couldn't clean her teeth because they were dealing with the fallout. And Dewey's undercoat was matted to the point where he could have gotten skin infections, and it's starting to get warm again. Things were getting... well, more urgent than your basic, "Cat's fine, buy better food," sort of appointment.

But the vets office was working on a small staff, so things were going slow, and Steve--

Where to start with Steve?  

First of all, we had to get her stoned before we brought her in. That actually worked well because she DIDN'T spike a fever, but...

Well, first they got the two cats mixed up. Not sure how--skeleton crew I suspect. So they gave Dewey a sedative, then started his medical groom. When he woke up and started to PROTEST having his hair shaved down to the felty undercoat next to his skin, they realized, "Hey--maybe we sedated the wrong cat--but it wasn't an altogether BAD idea!"  So seriously--next time they have to do that, I'll spring for the extra $$$ to get the cat stoned.

Steve ALSO got her sedative--and then got her teeth cleaned. And then was almost ready to go home when we got there. And then, apparently the vet went back to get her catheter out and give her a last scratch behind the ears when the cat almost went TITS UP on the vet! Like, she got back there and Steve was cyanotic, and they had to give her medicine for blood pressure and her fever spiked and they had to rub her paws with alcohol to cool her off and basically my cat almost died because she went to the dentist.

FUCKING cat. 

So the vet gave us Dewey to take home and then told us to come back in two hours for Steve. 

Realize that, with the extra wait times we spent maybe three hours, total, in the vets office, six to ten feet away from other pet owners, waiting. 

But we got home and two things--
One, Dewey's medical groom is... oh dear God. Funniest thing we've ever seen. From the backend, it looks like he's a naked skinny pole-dancing furry with go-go boots. From the front, he's a walking photoshop image--who photoshopped that beautiful cat's head on that weirdo body?

Much hilarity ensued. 

And then, when Steve got home... she was needy. She bitched at all of us for a solid half-hour, and then when she was done, she bullied the dog off my lap THREE TIMES so she could purr on me. 

AndI hugged her so tight and told her to NEVER scare us like that again. Poor baby. She thinks she's so tough, but apparently the dentist is no place for a lady.  

And we got home (the first time) and we had the dogs with us--we THOUGHT we were just going to pick the cats up, but Mate and Squish ended up waiting in the car for an hour while ZoomBoy and I waited for two cat carriers (we thought). Anyway--Nebula had been IN THE HOUSE ALONE. Boy, did he let us have it--"You are here! I love that you are here! And the dogs! They will play with me! And the other ca--OH MY GOD! YOU HAVE CHANGED THE OTHER CAT! Will he play? Other cat will you play? WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOUR FUR?"

And Dewey was like, "Leave me alone so that I might eat and brood at my hideousness..."

But now he's all excited to play again. 

And Steve has been all over me, all day. I'm fine with that. *squeezes her* God, she's loud and she's bitchy and sometimes she's even mean--but I love her so.

(And people are LOVING Henry--I'm so glad! Don't forget to get your copy HERE!)

Monday, March 30, 2020

Regarding Henry

Shades of Henry

by Amy Lane

A Flophouse Story
One bootstrap act of integrity cost Henry Worrall everything—military career, family, and the secret boyfriend who kept Henry trapped for eleven years. Desperate, Henry shows up on his brother’s doorstep and is offered a place to live and a job as a handyman in a flophouse for young porn stars.

Lance Luna’s past gave him reasons for being in porn, but as he continues his residency at a local hospital, they now feel more like excuses. He’s got the money to move out of the flophouse and live his own life—but who needs privacy when you’re taking care of a bunch of young men who think working penises make them adults?

Lance worries Henry won’t fit in, but Henry’s got a soft spot for lost young men and a way of helping them. Just as Lance and Henry find a rhythm as den mothers, a murder and the ghosts of Henry’s abusive past intrude. Lance knows Henry’s not capable of murder, but is he capable of caring for Lance’s heart?

Buy Here 


It's weird, how these days of "social distancing" impact our feelings of time. It wasn't until the publicist at Dreamspinner pinged me to let me know what promotions were going down for Henry that I realized, Oh my God! I have a release tomorrow!

Now, normally for us, release day is sort of a big deal (you think?) but in this case, like so many of us out there, the list of my concerns outside of work and what happens on the interwebs is so much more important. "Maybe it's allergies--maybe it's Covid-19!" is more than just a Maybelline rip-off, and so is, "Toilet... toilet paper? And hand soap!"  Then there's my favorite, "Will my adult children be able t make rent," followed by, "So, does my oldest child with asthma know ALL THE SYMPTOMS of the virus and how to get help if he's having trouble breathing?"

We are scared.

But we are also looking for ways to entertain ourselves to get our mind off of that--and I know my audiobook and regular book reading is one of my best ways to pass the time. And I think Henry is a really worthy character to pass it with!

One of my favorite games to play with a character is to see someone whose behavior looks absolutely inexcusable and then to look inside them to see what made them do these inexcusable things. When we first meet Henry--in Dex in Blue-- he's passing as a redneck, making gross sexist jokes, and sleeping with his sister's husband.

Ick. Just... ick.

And people still wanted his story! (I was stunned--seriously.)

I figured, "Well, maybe his story--but not a romance." So I brought him back for the fourth Fish book, Fish on a Bicycle. He was the guy who didn't do it. And the more I wrote him from Jackson and Ellery's point of view--and they look inside everybody to see what makes them tick--the more I realized there was more to this guy than meets the eye.

And I'd wanted to write the Flophouse books for a while--books about the Johnnies guys but shorter, a little less angsty, and using some of the fun aspects of porn and a houseful of guys who haven't quite grown up yet, in spite of what their penises could do.

So it became imperative that Henry live at the flophouse--and then that he and Lance have a story of their own.

Of course, this brings up timeline difficulties. Henry was obviously in the beginning stages of his association with Lance in Fish on a Bicycle--so I had to include the murder in Shades of Henry without overwhelming the reader with details. I didn't WANT a rehash of Fish 4. I wanted a book that could stand on its own and I worked hard to write one--and my editors worked hard for that too.

But we were all rooting for Henry--the idea of a character who is not just black and white, who was shades of gray and blue and a little red and even some gold was so appealing. Henry's not a perfect guy. He doesn't always say the right thing. He doesn't get the guys in porn, and he doesn't get Sacramento and he has no idea how to make things right with his brother.

But he learns. One step at a time. Because his heart is good, and he does have integrity, even though he thinks it's cost him everything. But a guy who would do the right thing even though it costs him--that's a good guy. I think everybody who wanted his story was right.

We need to know more about him.

So I hope you all love Henry--I really hope you enjoy his story.

And I hope you're ready for more Flophouse stories, because I have at least two more planned.

Rat Erotica...



Seriously-- blogging gets more and more difficult by the nanosecond:

Quarantine, Day 16: Took the dogs for a walk. Much excitement ensued!

Quarantine, Day 17: Took the dogs for a walk. Much excitement ensued!

You can see a pattern there, right?  I think the one thing I'm most disappointed about is I keep losing my earbuds--I was really getting into a pattern of listening to an audiobook while knitting. (Just saying, good thing I'm a Karen Rose fan-- she gets to write books that are at least 20 hours long!)

Anyway-- besides that, there's, well, us. Knocking around the house and trying not to piss each other off.

Squish has impressed me though-- she's cleaned her room to the point that we bought paint today, and Mate priced flooring. We can move shit out and let her paint her room and order a mattress and she can move out of the bunk-bed which she sleeps in (she's bottom, ZoomBoy's top.) By the way, it freaks us all out that Lowe's is still open. I stayed in the car and let them go price paint--it was surreal how full that parking lot was.

His room will need a flame-thrower and the national guard to clean out--we need to make sure the weather is going to be super nice before we do his--and, hate to say it, need to make sure the thrift stores are open to donate too!

So, my big excitement tomorrow is that Shades of Henry releases Tuesday! I'm super excited about it--but I'll talk about it a little more tomorrow :-)

Oh!

About the title.

Most of us are finding things to keep amused, but if you get a chance to watch John Oliver's show tonight (it's usually aired on YouTube or HBO Go the day after) after the VERY sobering discussion about how the fucking pustule in chief has our blood on his hands (again--I haven't forgotten Puerto Rico or the hate crimes he's inspired) has failed us huge, there is a VERY entertaining segment about...

Well, Rat Erotica.

Here-- skip through the first part, if you need to, but oh my stars. The last five or so minutes...

Enjoy.



And if you haven't had your fill of  Tweets and Memes-- this one from Buzzfeed sort of nailed my generation like a hand to the heart:

https://www.buzzfeed.com/mikespohr/genx-tweets-coronavirus?fbclid=IwAR1YpPEevLYKCfi2YERFoM4zE_0AR3gieB8wxNzsR5tvbFe4cJwugKmsuFo

And there you go. It's gotten down to Buzzfeed and Rat Erotica. But it's better than excitement--because I have had plenty of that.


Thursday, March 26, 2020

Dogs-- the smart and the not so much...

Today was super exciting because I got to go walking by myself.

Yeah-- I know. For those of us doing the social distancing thing, exciting is relative, but, hey, we take our wins where we can get them.  Anyway-- when I say "by myself" I, uh, MEAN by myself. Not only did Mate and the kids stay home, but so did everybody else in the world. The park was so quiet--and so deserted--that I didn't use my earbuds while listening to my audiobook, because my ears are almost always pressurized anyway (worst part about flying) so I didn't have to suffer through. Anyway--nobody to hear the sex scene but me--go figure, right?

So quiet, in fact, that the bunnies came out.

Well, like I said-- we take our "excitement" where we can get it.

Anyway--in other wins, Mate and I are stunned at the way we've managed to conserve toilet paper. *crosses fingers* Maybe they'll have some in the stores by Saturday? After that it's paper towels for sure.

Also,  we have figured out that Nebula takes a bath in his water bowl every morning. *shrugs* I got nothing. Totally psycho and utterly charming.

Chicken managed to talk us into watching Tiger King, because she wanted to share in the WHAT THE HOLY FUCK IS THIS! Sentiment. I told her she was like one of those raccoons, and she didn't know what I was talking about, so I give you this:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BD5ha9mENzw

So, watch Tiger King if you want a taste of mango chutney and burnt hair in your psyche. I personally hope we stop after part one, because it's bananas.

And, to finish off our nothing day, I have this:

As  I stood up to go give the dog's treats, I said, "Hey, Mate, want to help me give the dogs--"

"Flea treatment?" he said from the living room.

"Yeah--how did you know?"

He was looking down the hallway. "Because Johnnie saw you grab the box and is now hiding under the bed."

"Are you kidding me?" (We can never get Johnnie out from under the bed--it's a king sized bed with no clearance--you'd have to be quite literally the size of a small dog.)

"Nope." He cuddled Geoffie while I broke out her combo flea prevention/heartworm meds. "But you're just going to sit here and take it, aren't you?"

On the counter was a hamburger left over from lunch. I ripped off a chunk of it and after she'd swallowed her pill I gave her the hamburger--she was WAY excited, and Mate used the moment to rattle the dog treat bag to try to entice Johnnie out of the bedroom.

Didn't work.

So, Johnnie is sitting next to me, staring balefully at me as I work, asking for a dog treat, and Geoffie is probably bragging in dog about how SHE got a hamburger for being a good girl.

I figure she deserves it ;-)


Wednesday, March 25, 2020

Quarantine, Day... What day is it?

Squish was petting her cat tonight and found... *shudders*

Squish: Oh, hey-- what's this? What did you bring me? Is this a SLUG!

Me: *tiny voice* ew...

Squish: Look at it, Mom! It's so cute!

Me: *tiny voice* Sure. Adorable. *closes eyes*

Squish: No, seriously--I've seen videos on tik-tok where they put the slugs in jars and keep them moist and cover them in leaves, and feed them loam and...

Me: *finally finding my voice* No. Absolutely not.

Squish: But Mom!

Me: Not on day... what day is it?

Squish: Tuesday.

Me: Oh, shit--okay-- so, day 11?

Squish: Yeah.

Me: Maybe day 23--maybe.

ZB: We can WHAT?

Squish: Make a tiny slug terrarium and keep adorable little baby slugs!

Me: Put that outside maybe?

ZB: OH MY GOD NO!

Squish: But they're so CUTE!

ZB: *picking up dog* Cute? You call that CUTE? THIS. This is cute. Look at him? Isn't he sweet?

Johnnie the dog: *rolls eyes and grimaces obsequiously*

Squish: He's fine--but imagine a little jar full of baby slugs!

Me and ZB: No. No. We are not that bored.

Squish: *walks toward door to deliver baby slug softly on a bed of damp grass*  Not. Yet.

Johnnie the dog: *looks a little alarmed*

Monday, March 23, 2020

Boring Family Stuff

Kind of a weird day-- the power went off a couple of times, probably because the outside was super blowy, and the internet was down for a couple of hours. On top of the empty streets and the quiet cold of the dog park, we expected to see zombies at any moment. Fortunately not--no baseball bats at the ready.

And after that, I sort of had a... a snow day, I guess.

I've been doing my best to be a bright and shining force of positivity for my quarantined family, but today, all I wanted to do--ALL I wanted to do--was knit.

Mate let me. Made me dinner (hey, it doesn't happen often, so I shall savor) and let me pick the movies  (Hitman's Bodyguard and Kung Fu Panda 2) and the kids have reached peak boredom. Apparently the power going off was the most exciting thing to happen to them in days. They were like, "Oooh... are you sure there's no zombies?" The upshot of this is that they leave us to our old people's movies and allow us to enjoy.

So I came within a movie of finishing this shawl.

It's an Oaklet shawl-- you can find it on Ravelry, and it's a pretty plain pattern down to the last border. In this case, I was (am!) sort of triumphant.

See, the original shawl is supposed to take up about 400 yards of sock-weight yarn, and I had 650 from an extra large skein. The pattern says you can increase the number of rows by multiples of eight, so I knitted sixteen extra rows, thinking I could capitalize on that extra 250 yards. And then I deliberated... eight more rows, or start the 21 row end game? Because the shawl increases from the top down, every row increases by four stitches--by the end, you're knitting a SUPER long row of nearly 350 stitches, so that last 250 yards was not going to last like I thought.

And sure enough, I quit then and started the endgame, and it might come down to the wire. (Yes, I know, knitters problems-- absolutely riveting!)  So tomorrow I'll probably show it blocking, and however much yarn I have left (not gonna be a lot) but today I've got a detail of the beginning lace work, and of course, the pretty pretty yarn.

Not sure what I"m going to do with this one. I give away most of my knitting, and I had a plan to knit all of my cousins something--I was going to do six wildly different shawls, and this would be part of that collection. I could give it to my son's girlfriend--she does love these colors but I started something different and a little sturdier for her. I could give it to my mom or stepmom--but it just doesn't seem like their thing.

A part of me wants to keep it, of course. The yarn is... to say it's soft is to say kittens are adorable. And the colors make me swoon.

But we'll see. My grandmother used to knit and crochet random things, and I just connected with my cousins again this year and I thought the box of shawls would be a super neat thing I could do to remind them they have cousins on the far side of the country.

I mean, I have three more shawls to finish (I have literally four started shawls in my UFO pile right now, and one I owe a friend from her birthday last year.) By the time I finish the whole box of shawls, I may just be in a place where I've seen it enough, peeking out of the box, and pet it wistfully, that I can part with it.

Maybe not ;-)

Thursday, March 19, 2020

A Walk in the Park

So, I've checked the requirements of "lock down" or "shelter in place" or "quarantine" extensively. Every city--including Sacramento--has a clause that says it's okay to go outside and exercise.

It's funny--those of you who have met me--a large, squishy woman who doesn't walk very fast and looks like she eats Oreos for breakfast and double cheeseburgers for lunch (in my youth, but, seriously, not for quite some time) is probably the last candidate anyone would have for needing that walk in the park.

And I didn't realize how much I needed it until I drove the dogs to the park--Mate next to me, because he's used to working out three days a week and his muscles get sore too--and the gate was closed.

"Oh."

"Well, yeah," he said. "I've been anticipating this." (Married people will know the special kind of exasperation that comes with statements like these.)

"Playground equipment," I said numbly. "Like petri dishes." But inside, I'm hitting the wall.

The "It's okay, it's okay, everything is fine," wall.

Everything is not fine. I haven't been able to buy toilet paper for a week (and lucky me, I generally have plenty because it's a tick of mine--one that's not likely to get better) and my daughter's birthday is probably going to be us, ordering pizza (maybe!) and singing Happy Birthday to her with her grandparents on Skype.

My eyes burned, and I actively had to pull my shit together. This, in the grand scheme of things, is no big deal.

We stop by the grocery store to see if they have toilet paper (that's a negatory on toilet paper--negative on the TP) and while we're there, I take the dogs out to see if they want to take their crap on the tiny spot of lawn down at the end of the parking lot. (They did not. In fact, I think it hurt their perception of my sanity.)

That's when Mate and I see--hello!-- Squish's soccer coach, Coach Dave. Coach Dave is an officer in our local police force--head of S.W.A.T.--and he was parked two spots away, doing his paperwork. We chatted, and I told him about the park and he was frustrated too.

"What? Are people like going around licking park benches or something?  Because those people deserve what they get!"

We laughed and I said something about little kids and playgrounds and he grimaced. I said, "Yeah, I bet you've been seeing plenty of people who've had enough of each other, right?"

Oh yeah. That was the biggest item on his roster.

And then he offered to drive through our neighborhood if we were ever feeling unsafe, because he knew it was scary out there.

And I don't think we'll ever take him up on it, but I am reminded that it's not all bad. No, the grocery story did NOT have TP--I am  told it will be there Saturday and everybody gets ONLY ONE PACKAGE-- but as we drove home along a different route we came to... wait for it...

A walking park. This one didn't have a parking lot--it's used a lot by residents in the nearby houses, and you can park on the street, and, well, walk through.

Perfect place to walk your dogs. And even if you pass somebody on the path, it's easy to maintain a six to ten foot distance.

We took the kids today because we don't want them to become solids and I was remembering something I'd heard about Amish children, about how they didn't need super special things--for them, a walk with their family was a nice treat.  Yes, there was a lot of the "silkworm dance"--as i the kids go, "OH MY GOD IT'S A SILKWORM GET IT OFF GET IT OFF GET IT OFF!" complete with shimmying and batting at their hair and threatening to strip off all their clothing in the chilly morning, but the dogs got walked and the people stretched their legs and we passed one person--ONE PERSON-- total on the mile long walk.  We saw others in the distance--but hey, it was a lot better than taking them walking in our own neighborhood, where people have more guns than goddamned common sense.

And Mom got her small sliver of normal. The thing that helped her make lunch and then dinner and wash dishes and now, stay up to write to deadline, because life goes on.

Mate and I plan to go tomorrow.

I'm good with that.

A walk in the park--sometimes dealing with life really is that easy.

(For those interested, this is a section of the local press release telling us that yes, we can go outside. Honestly? I'm going to refer to it often.)


The order allows people to leave their house to go for walks, exercise, and do go to open businesses, including grocery stores, banks, laundromats, hardware stores, health care facilities, pharmacies, pet food stores, and a few other businesses that are essential to basic household functioning.
In public, though, the order is for people to remain six feet apart. Grocery stores have been given the OK to limit the number of people in the store at one time to assure that people in the store can remain six feet apart, including in the checkout line.

Wednesday, March 18, 2020

St. Patrick's Day

St. Patrick's Day was my grandmother's birthday, and although she was  100% off the boat Italian, she used to say she was meant to be Irish. She had a collection of hats so big it was published in the local paper, and you'd better believe some of them were green.

She also dyed her hair as red as I dye mine, well into her eighties.

She was quite a woman. She ran her own business, she stood up to her moody alcoholic husband (whom I loved--but I didn't get to see his darker sides, mostly) and she was a bonafide hottie, who was modeling to get through school when she was recruited by the OSS.

No lie.

So although I'm not a fan of drinking, St. Patrick's Day holds a special place in my heart.

This year, it was more of a travel day--Chicken and I were supposed to be flying to Nashville to participate in BookLover's Con, but Covid-19 had other plans, and we accepted that. Today, we had to go grocery shopping (reports of no toilet paper are, eerily enough, absolutely true. Yikes, people--how much were you planning to crap in the next month?) and generally clean house.

And I made corned beef and cabbage with fried potatoes (because boiled potatoes are boring, unless they're mashed with sour cream) and invited my children over for dinner.

Chicken's roommate couldn't make it, but my older son's girlfriend could, and we watched Disney movies and generally had a pleasant night together--a gathering of seven if you will.

I think it was something we needed to remember. Social distancing is important--and so is being careful. For a while, our next movie gatherings may be on Netflix Party. But for tonight we were together and happy, and I'm going to maintain this was important. being together and happy produces endorphins, right? That boosts our immunity, right? Same reason masturbation's good for us, right?

And mostly, it reminds us that when we come out of our social distancing caves, there are people who love us, and a reason to get back together.

Stay healthy and safe--and happy St. Patrick's Day everybody.