… Virginia is a magical thing.
I know I recently said I dislike the South because of humidity and tornadoes, but I have to say there is really something deeply satisfying about driving through the distinctly Spring color of Virginia. The color of the woods changes constantly for a few weeks from the time the leaves first start emerging when it is a soft, pale green to the time the trees are fully leafed out and the deep green of summer settles in for the steam bath. And then, there are the Dogwoods that dot their white flowers through the trees. It really is gorgeous and if you’re careful, when you take in a deep breath of the moist, loam scented air – you won’t get a lungful of pollen.
At the time I’m typing this, I’ve been in Virginia for a little over two days. I’ve visited with my writing coach which was worth the drive through the backcountry on roads that were on the edge of dangerous due to two days of pouring rain. I’ve known Andi for … 24 years – or perhaps it would be more correct to say I met her 24 years ago when we were in High School, and we lost touch for about 20 of those intervening years, but she’s been invaluable in alternately giving me the encouraging pats on the head or the mostly gentle kick in the pants when I start whining “Writing is haaarrrrddd!! I don’t wanna!!”. I’m getting back on track with the book after seeing her. I’m seeing the story in my head again which is comforting and reassuring. There’s also the fact she directed me to the Bold Rock Cidery, where I got to taste their wares before I bought a 32 and 64 oz growler of their ciders and took them home to drink with my parents.
Right now, I’m sitting in a hotel room in Staunton. I went to college here and I’m getting together with a friend from college in about half an hour, so I thought I should get some blog time down before I forget or get too tired. I walked through downtown this afternoon. I bought handmade chocolate and ate handmade gelato. Then, I climbed the hill. People who live here will know what I’m talking about, but… I thought I was going to keel over. 20 years away from these hills will kick your butt when you come back and decide to hike with a cup of gelato in your hand. I didn’t stop, though. I went from the bottom of the hill in downtown, all the way to the theatre building on the college campus and I didn’t stop. I must be stubborn. Or dumb. Or perhaps I should stop letting everyone tell me I’m so horribly out of shape because, hey, I didn’t die, stop, or quit! (I wonder if there’s a bigger message there…)