Sunday, March 13, 2011

Getting There Was the Worst

     I promised to tell you about the trip overseas and I truly will. I've just not had time up to now. And now I'm coming down with a sore throat and I have income tax to do this week.
     Suppose  I can come up with any more excuses?
     Here goes on the first lap anyway...
     The day my granddaughter and I took off was the fifth of February, my (mmmmmmth) birthday...and NO, I'm not telling. I will say, though, that on February 27 she would turn 21 and that is substantially younger than myself . The fifth of February, 2011, was also in the middle of one of the worst blizzards we've had across the US in the past few years, effectively shutting down airports all over the place.
     Fortunately, Springfield was not one of them.
     Unfortunately, other connections were.
     We spent five hours plus, fifty miles away from home, waiting to make connections to fly out to Dallas (the day before the Super Bowl, of all things) where another six inches of snow had complicated things at that particular airport. Then the plane developed mechanical trouble and they sent a substitute. The Chicago airport was closed down so those passengers for overseas were re-routed to Dallas (effectively putting us at the end of the line) and we barely made it, at last connecting with a second substitute flight that carried us to Heathrow in London instead of Paris where we were actually heading. THEN we had to connect with ANOTHER flight to go on to Paris.
     As for the flight, suffice it to say, I've been on bigger planes and had larger seat spaces. Also it took not quite ten hours to do the overseas trip.
     At least it was through the night and one could doze since it seemed the natural time to do so.
     We had intended to check into the hotel at 10:30 Sunday morning but it was 5:30 in the evening when we were met by a wonderful gentleman named Rajah who had moved to Paris from Shri Lanka about thirty years before with his family and was employed as driver by Paris Shuttle Service. Although it was late in the day, he did us a great service by pointing out all of the interesting spots as we entered the city, naming the buildings, telling us bits and pieces of the history and piquing our curiosity. Upon arriving at the Hotel Concorde Montparnasse we were welcomed by the concierge and shown to our room where we collapsed and decided to order room service (Granddaughter had a club sandwich and I had French onion soup) and leave the sight-seeing for morning.
     From the window we could look out on a circular opening with a very large flat pool of water in the center and a street curving around it. On the outside of the street a bicycle path ran between the sidewalk and buildings of which our hotel was one and streets led off in several directions. Down the Rue Concorde to the right of our hotel and off in the distance the Eiffel Tower was visible but our window  faced the center of the circle and the water so we were unable to see it. However , this was a striking scene at night with the lights all around and the cars and bicycles circling.
     Saturday and Sunday had been stressful days so we agreed to work out our plans for the day to come, to enjoy the sight from the hotel window and go to bed early.
     There is so much of Paris. One could be there for a month and never even touch all of it.

Sunday, March 6, 2011


     Friends tell me I lead an exciting life for my age and I guess I agree. I no sooner got rested up from my trip overseas (yes, I know I've not brought you up to date on THAT yet either!) when my son-in-law had a heart attack and sent us all into a tizzy.
     So I spent a week (well, it seemed like a week) at their home fifty miles away from my own bed . . . and I could tell it too . . . while he had emergency surgery and began the recovery process. He seems to be doing all right now, tires easily though and his eyes aren't focusing well, as he suffered a slight stroke too. But the doctors are optimistic that if he follows directions (eating properly, exercising daily under supervision, working with the eye) he will be almost a new man. I tease him by telling him that he never was the man he will be and say that now he will be expected to really work. We have a good relationship, thank goodness, and tell everyone we have a mutual admiration society with reservations. Anyway, he is on the way to good health again and my daughter can at last begin to relax and get back to her own job.
     Got word today that the new anthology will be out the first of April. Mysteries of the Ozarks, Vol. III is a project of OWInc., the writers' group I helped organize several years ago to promote writers and writings of the Ozarks. Orders are going great guns and plans are for the fourth volume to be published in the fall. For anyone interested please go and check it out. Also feel free to join us there. Just google the name or get in touch with me as the blog doesn't allow me to post web addresses for some reason.
    FYI, we are a select group consisting of only five board members but the website welcomes anyone who is interested to join and take part in discussions, etc. We post conference information, etc., and other things of interest so please take a look.
     Not having anything else on my mind (hahaha) I came up with a tiny bit of a story idea that now I cannot get out of my mind. Unfortunately, it is just a tidbit and now I don't have enough to develop into something so I'm stuck between a rock and a hard place. Oh, well, I put it in a note on the computer to languish until the day comes when either I'll develop it or it will disappear or I'll labor over what in the world is THIS anyway???
     Sorry I've not done the trip yet . . . I truly will try and talk about it one of these days. Truly . . . when I CAN FIND THE TIME!