I’ve been spending the last week at Jennifer Crusie’s Mansion o’ Fun on the Ohio River, and having a wonderful time with her and Lani.  We’ve been shopping and going out for healthy lunches.



(see me having an foodgasm over a single french fry after all my dietary goodness)   But mostly there have been no french fries in my life, just healthy, good stuff, and I’m hoping when I get back home that I’ll have lost some more weight.  If not, I’ll just hunker down and work harder.

We’ve also been doing crafts (mainly watching Crusie build collages), watching movies (The Big Sleep, Kiss Kiss Bang Bang and several episodes of the new contemporary Sherlock Holmes series bestillmyheart), I fixed Crusie’s sewing machine, christened her bread machine (the best 100% whole wheat bread recipe ever), and mostly sat by the fire (gas, so we don’t have to haul wood like we do in Vermont) and talked, and laughed, and even cried a little bit.

I needed this break.  Even though I had to leave my darling husband behind, I needed to get away from all the responsibilities that are dragging me down.  I’m already feeling the edginess begin creeping back, since I have to have a smack down with my agent over a couple of things and I hate displeasing people.  It’s time for me to grow a pair (so to speak — I’m sure Richie would rather I didn’t) and decide what I want out of life.  Maybe it’s time to grow up at age 63.

Anyway, tomorrow’s my last day in Ohio, then home to all the stress life has to offer, including taxes and credit cards and deadlines.  I’d rather go to Australia.

But in the meantime Northern Vermont is the best I got.  And we’ve had so little snow it’s not even as breathtakingly beautiful as it usually is.

Hey, life’s a bitch and then you die.  I’m not going to be Mrs. Crankypants again.  I’m going to pull up my socks and get on with life, shoulders back, whistling in the dark so no one knows I’m afraid.

Because it’s not the monsters in the dark who will get you.  It’s the fear that drags you down.