So a few months ago, this absolutely wonderful woman named Karen Rose hunted me down on e-mail and said she loved my work. (I'm totally name-drop-bragging now. I realize this.) I was tickled and awed-- because I had JUST uploaded like, six of Karen's books onto my Kindle. I've said it before-- het suspense is one of my favorite author candies, and Karen's books looked like they were just what I needed.
They were. They are wonderful examples of the genre, and her characters--warm, awesome, unique, alive, frustrating, endearing, flawed and fanTASTIC.
I'm on book four, and I'm totally going to shotgun everything she's written.
So, Karen was going to be in town visiting another friend (rhymes with Brenda Novak. Okay, it's Brenda Novak. Yes, I know who that is too. *squeal*) and she wanted to meet, and could I meet?
Oh YES I could definitely meet for lunch.
I put it on the calendar. April 28th. Hm... April 28th... is there anything... well, it's my nephew's birthday-- but he's 25-- I don't think he'll care too much if I don't show up after his shift at the warehouse with a cake. Oh wait! His birthday's on the 29th! Still not showing up, and no-- I have nothing doing.
Huzzah! I'm going to lunch to meet a new friend.
And all I had to do this morning was write some e-mails of vital importance, and then a friend called with a must-have chat, and then I'd forgotten to pay a bill and those people called and then--
Oh! Hey-- another friend is knocking on my door. She has the day to putz around, and maybe we could have lunch?
Uh... sorry? No? Come in though and hang out! You know where the cold cuts are and the dogs love you. Now scuse me while I spazz around my computer and finish up what I'm doing and hey-- oh my God! It's 11:15! I haven't showered--how in the hell did that happen!
So I run in to the bedroom to gather my clothes, and have a no-shit-three-minute panic attack of what do you wear when lunching with a friend in Citrus Heights (not known for fashion here folks!) and while I"m in the middle of that...
Chicken calls. She hasn't slept in three days and she's non-verbal and she has three miles before she gets home.
The whole world stops as I talk to her about random things and she sees her house and Karen texts me and says she's at our cafe but don't hurry!
You BET I hurried. The minute Chicken got home I took off in a flurry-- three minute shower in cold water, fuck it all I'll wear this, make-up on in the car on the way oh... "Goodbye, Wendy, I'll see you after I pick the kids from school, thanks for stopping by, later, ciaou!"
And into traffic I go.
I got there just about when I said I would--and lunch was lovely. And she was even lovelier. I recognized the rhythm of a true storyteller in her speech and just settled down to listen.
I want to have many many more lunches with this woman, because people? She's amazing.
But next time, I'm going to send the ever-loving universe a copy of my schedule with the date blacked out.
The universe knows why.