Buck and I bundled up for a woods walk yesterday. Brilliant sunshine, paper cut wind, and temperatures right at freezing in the mid-afternoon. When we lived in the Smoky Mountains near Asheville for a few years, I loved putting on a turtleneck, jeans, two pairs of socks, hiking boots, and a heavy hoodie to go hike the mountains. But now that we're back in flatland Florida, I expect my winters to go a certain way, and found myself kicking a pine cone as we walked down the fire line and muttering: papaya, avocado, mango, tank top, shorts.
"What did you say?" Buck said.
"Papaya, avocado, mango, tank top, shorts, Costa Rica, banana daiquiri."
"Did you say Costa Rica?"
"What about the monkeys?"
"Oh, man, I forgot. So, when do you think the weather's going to warm up?"
Meanwhile, back at the house, I've been writing but not blogging, taking a kick-butt online fiction class, pacing the floor, talking on the phone and reading. Pretty eclectic reading list:
Literary Nonfiction: Learning by Example by Patsy Sims
Anticancer: a New Way of Life by David Servan-Schreiber, MD, PhD
Acedia & Me: a Marriage, Monks, and a Writer's Life by Kathleen Norris
Hooked: write fiction that grabs readers at page one and never lets them go by Les Edgerton
2010 Writer's Market Deluxe Edition
2010 Guide to Literary Agents
Plot: elements of fiction writing by Ansen Dibell
Plot & Structure by James Scott Bell
Teaching a Stone to Talk by Annie Dillard
River Teeth: a Journal of Nonfiction Narrative
Ninth Letter (friend Sarah Einstein has a seriously fine story in the Fall/Winter issue called "Mot." It is courageous and tender. It blew me away.)
All the Lavish in Common by Allan Peterson
Prick of the Spindle: Fiction Open Competition, No. 1, Fall 2009
The Cancer-Fighting Kitchen by Rebecca Katz with Mat Edelson
And I have been missing Scotland, especially the tiny Isle of Arran. I'll leave you with two photos from several years ago. One is Buck and me with our Arran friends, Charles and Lynn Fforde. The other is the tiny, sweet post office in the village of Broddick on Arran.