Thanks to everyone for their well wishes over the holidays. I return those wholeheartedly.
I got back Sunday from Arkansas and spent the rest of the day trying to get caught up on everything I’d fallen behind on. I didn’t even come close. I did look at my Google Reader and had 288 posts. I actually scanned through all of them but there was no way I’d be able to comment on all so I didn’t comment on any. I should be able to pick up with new posts again starting today or tomorrow.
I had a pretty good trip, although they changed the gate on me in Memphis and didn’t announce it, and I missed my flight to Fort Smith, Arkansas. After I got home I realized they’d sent me emails about the change. That didn’t help since I had no way to check email while I was sitting in the terminal at the original gate. After running madly through the terminal I managed to make a flight to Fayetteville, Arkansas, and my brother Paul David and his wife Rita came all the way up there to get me. Thanks to them.
My mom seemed to generally be feeling OK, although she is certainly quite fragile these days. I did lots of visiting and ate a lot. Mom’s husband, Ray, has 7 kids and most of them brought varying amounts of food over for the holidays. We didn’t go hungry and I got my Lemon Pie. I also wore out my visiting bone for a while. And I only got chewed out one time by my mom, so things are looking up! The weather was great and I got to see my high school football team, the Charleston Tigers, win a game on their way to the playoffs for the Arkansas state championship.
One thing that really came home to me over the holidays is how much importance folks from small towns put on family relationships. Every time a new person’s name came up, my mom and Ray and my other family members would start in listing that person’s parents and their brothers and sisters. It had never occurred to me what a kind of “tribal” behavior that is, but I may post more on it later. It’s also interesting how it jumped out at “me,” having lived for a long time in a much more urban environment. The tribe is still alive and well in our world.
Coming up in future posts: 1) an interview with writer Shauna Roberts. 2) a bit about the process of trying to put together an anthology of one’s short stories. 3) more oddities and weirdness.