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Wednesday, December 30, 2009

2009

2009. I won't be sorry to see it go, honestly. It started badly and it's ending worse. I lost my Lionel baby, too. And yet...

February 2 my first novel came out
February 18 my third nonfiction came out
February 22 I married the love of my life
April 13 Lithus got a kick-ass job in Mexico
June 1 I made my deadline for my second novel
June 3 I joined him in Mexico
July we became carnies
through September, I lived the life I have always dreamed of
October 3 I had the single best night of my life

The beginning was bad. The ending is worse. But the middle, friends...oh, the middle. And that's what will define 2009 for me.

Those are Pobble Thoughts. That and a buck fifty will get you coffee.

Monday, December 21, 2009

December 21st

Blessed Yule, everyone.

May the light return to those who need it, as well as to the world.

Blessed Be.

~ the Pobble

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Speaking of Giving...

How much do I wish I had written this article?

The NY Times has a gift guide for people of color this year. And, sadly, not surprisingly, people (mostly white people, apparently) are calling it racist. Here are a few excerpts for those of you who don't have time to click (but trust me; it's worth a click)

Culturally, all people are not the same and it is ignorant to believe otherwise. The politically correct belief that everyone is and should be exactly alike - which, in reality, tends to mean that all should share the same interests as the majority - actually serves to strip people from different cultures of the richness of their heritage and limits our society.

Would the criers of "racist" claim that in addition to cultural traits, all hair textures and facial features should be identical? Should they all be that of a Caucasian person? Follow the logic down this path and the proponents of a "colorblind" society start to sound racist.

"But what if the NY Times had a section of gifts by white people for white people?" some ask. I would argue that it already does. That's what its regular gift section is.
By Lola Adesioye for The Grio www.thegrio.com, 12/14/09

The rest is equally as brilliant. Check it out.

Those are Pobble Thoughts. That and a buck fifty will get you coffee.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

PSA Time

Every year about this time, I write a post about giving. This year is no different in that here we are, writing and reading my annual PSA about giving. This year is very different in that I am writing it from a perspective to which I am unaccustomed. It doesn't change the post much; it does remind what I want to stress and what isn't quite so important. As always, if you aren't planning on giving, for whatever reason, that's cool. Seriously. If you are going to give, please take some of this into consideration...

1. Christmas is about all kids. Everybody loves to take care of the little ones. Don't forget their older siblings. Not even all agencies address the desires and dreams of teenagers (some don't even deal with tweens, which just makes no sense to me. Digressing, Pobble...) Ask. Find out who and where the agencies are that ensure the older kids have something under the tree, too. Think about giving to them. Don't know where to start? Call the local middle and high schools. They'll know. Ask to speak to the receptionist or the school counselor. It's the people behind the scenes with the information, but ain't that always the truth? ;)

2. People are hurting everywhere this year. No one is exempt. Think you live in a neighborhood that hasn't been hit? Think again. Regardless of the face that is being put on, statistically, someone in your neighborhood, someone you see every week, someone wearing a warm coat and a smile, doesn't know how to make the season special for their kids or family this year. Try to give locally.

3. Every little bit helps. You may be unable to give to the extent that you once did and that you will be able to again right now. Okay. If you can afford to give anything, it's okay to give it. I don't care if it's a dollar. Or the spare change from your car. The agency or organization isn't going to look at your donation and turn it away because it's too little. They will take your spare change and add it to the other donations of spare change and *poof* create a meal or a stocking or a ride to a job interview or...something. With your little ol' dollar in coins.

4. Agencies can't stay in business to help people if they can't pay their electric bills and salaries. So often I hear "I don't give because my whole donation doesn't go directly to the people I want to help." Well get over your damn self and redefine your understanding of "directly to the people." Now, before anyone starts yelling at me, yes, there are indeed agencies whose salaries are too high, whose marketing campaigns cost more than some people make in a year, whose Board of Directors have grand parties twice a year. I'm not talking about giving to them. That's silly. However, your local shelter or human services organization? No one working there is rich. Most people working there have a second income for their family. I know agencies where the people working there are actually financially eligible for the very services they provide. Electricity costs money. Rent and mortgages cost money. Want to ensure your donation goes "directly to the people" then make sure the lights and heat stay on so the people you want to help have a place to go to get help. It really is just as important.

5. Compassion without respect is insulting. I have written about this over and over and over again. It continues to be important to me. There but for the grace of God, my friends. Treat people with the attitude you would want directed your way. If you wouldn't want to be pitied, then don't pity.

But above all, hold onto each other. Love each other. Be good to each other. Take care of each other. Enjoy whatever it is you have this year. Decorate your home, sing carols, take walks hand in hand. Reconnect with each other. Because sometimes, that's the greatest gift you can give the people you love.

Those are Pobble Thoughts. That and a buck fifty will get you coffee.

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Snow Days

Remember when a snow day was the greatest thing imaginable? We were lucky enough to grow up in walking distance of some of our best friends so, inevitably, a snow day included some combination of Crow, L&R, usually Kat, and me all at one of the houses. If sledding was on the agenda, it was L&R's house. If games and a fire in the fireplace were the goals, they'd come to us. My mother would hand over the dining room, with the fireplace and the large table and the access to the kitchen and be on the porch. L&R's mom would be...somewhere...while we hung out outside or in the tv room or around the kitchen table. Both made sure we had warm lunches and then...disappeared. Close enough for shouting but not there with us.

Today is a snow day here at the Cathouse. The Princess Kitty has been out with her best friend (also in walking distance). The squealing and fun of outdoors has turned into the squealing and fun of indoors. Snow was gathered and has been made into snow cream or snow ice cream or whatever name you give it. Princess Kitty's is pink. Best Friend's is green. I have no doubt hot cocoa will appear at some point in the day. And it's only 11:30.

As for Lithus and me? We're down in the basement. I've learned what my mom and L&R's mom were doing now; they were maintaining snow day sanity. Are we close enough for shouting? Of course. But sanity is good, too. The women who helped raise me taught me well. Sometimes, there's no shame in hiding. Let's hear it for snow days. And hiding.

Those are Pobble Thoughts. That and a buck fifty will get you coffee.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Finding Thanks

In the past, I have been accused of being optimistic to the point of Pollyanna. I know; it's hard to believe. The cynical, jaded Pobble that optimistic. It is, however, truer than I often like to admit. I truly believe things will work out. Maybe it's years working domestic violence and the perspective that gave me. Maybe it's being hospitalized at 17 for depression and the perspective that gave me. Maybe it's four years with a really excellent therapist and the perspective that gave me. Maybe it's just foolhardiness. I don't know. I do know that, eventually, I come out of my funk and start putting one foot in front of the other and then...something happens. I remember that, whatever it is, it isn't forever. Guess where I've gotten over the last three weeks?

Because there is still so much for which to be thankful:
* I'm going through this with Lithus by my side;
* when the Lovely Cats said "let me throw you a birthday party" we said "okay" instead of deciding to be somewhere else between the Oregon job and the Malaysia one;
* there wasn't another gig after my birthday party so we hung out here at the Cathouse, instead of ending up in Utah or somewhere, stuck, with no one and nowhere to go;
* unemployment insurance;
* the fact that we do have a place to be, to live, to stay, until the answers start being "when can you start" instead of "nothing right now";
* the timing on the sale of the jeep ~ and the fact that the deal hadn't quite closed;
* the knowledge that if it turns out we really need to be on the west coast or the gulf coast, we have places we can be there, too;
* that Lithus is discovering what this kind of family means;
* that I know what this kind of family means.

And it's the holiday season, for which I am always thankful because, well, it's the holidays.

Blessed be, everyone. May you find your own thanks this week.

Those are Pobble Thoughts. That and a buck fifty will get you coffee.

Sunday, November 01, 2009

Are You Fucking KIDDING Me?

Friday, the Lovely Cats and I head to Worcester, MA where my storage still is to check in on it and drop stuff off. I tell her that, according to Lithus's morning phone call, we need to be ready for me to leave the country Monday. On the way to Worcester, my phone rings. It is Lithus. In the 2 hours between the time he had called to say good morning and then, the company had lost their contract and was sending him home because they could no longer afford to keep him on. He'll be back in NYC Tuesday.

ARE YOU FUCKING KIDDING ME???????????????????

First, we weren't told there was a contract outstanding. We were told all contracts had been signed and there was GUARANTEED work through 2012. Second, he turned down 2 BETTER PAYING JOBS to take this one because it was the most interesting one AND THEY KNEW IT. Third, we have made several financial decisions based on this job (sold the jeep, made some large payments to get ahead on a few things, you get the idea). Fourth, we have jumped through our asses for them to get Lithus there in time to get to work on their timeline (remember the unexpected trip to Canada? Yeah.). We also made little decisions based on this (new clothes for both of us for my b'day party; buying Halloween costumes). And while these aren't big, even added together, they are only two things. We've been making these little choices since mid-September when John and Gary PROMISED us *they* were different because *they* had been pilots and *knew* what it was like for pilots to get dicked around by companies and had *sworn* they would never do this to *their* pilots once they started their own company. And they are sending him home after a week and a half.

ARE YOU FUCKING KIDDING ME???????????????????????

So now I had to call the guy who gave me a $50 deposit on the jeep and was expecting to pick it up this afternoon and get him his deposit back; Lithus has to find another job; I have to research unemployment and see if he has to be in the same state where he was last employed in order to collect; blah blah blah...

I was coming home from Worcester and making my plane reservations, wiring a deposit to the place we wanted to live in KL and canceling both my car insurance and our COBRA. TTG I had all that planned for Friday and no sooner.

My friends and family have said their goodbyes ~ some of them quite touching. We have been stressed and on overload trying to relocate overseas. Our friends and family have been patient and understanding and calming in spite of the craziness that this stretch of our lives has put them through. And now...

ARE YOU FUCKING KIDDING ME?????????????????????

I am angry, hurt, speechless, overwhelmed, you name it, I'm feeling it. The reality hasn't quite set in yet but it's coming.

ARE YOU FUCKING KIDDING ME???????????????????

Those are Pobble Thoughts. That and a buck fifty will get you coffee, if I can stand to be around you (and you can stand me, too) right now.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

In 24 Hours

Yesterday afternoon, Lithus and I left the Lovely Cats' house for JFK International Airport in NYC to put him on a plane to Malaysia this morning. Only this morning, it turns out that, due to an unforeseen glitch, Lithus couldn't go to Malaysia until he renewed his passport (which hasn't expired, for the record). So we researched options in New York City ~ to learn that when Canadian citizens in NY need passport assistance, they are told to go to Montreal. Time to go to Montreal.

Except, being in my own country and not traveling to Malaysia today, I didn't have *my* passport. Off we went, back to the Lovely Cats' house.

Tonight, we're in Montreal.
Tomorrow, we get Lithus' passport renewed.
Tuesday (please, oh please), we get Lithus' passport.
And the story goes on from there.
You know I'll keep you posted.

Those are Pobble Thoughts. That and a buck fifty will get you coffee.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Catching Everything Up

With apologies to you who read it in your email box...

1. We left Medford the last week in September and drove to Reno where Crow Mother lives.
2. Spent 2 days there, being Aunt Mame and Uncle Lithus.
3. Hit the road on Sunday for a cross country trip...in the jeep...that has no catalytic converter....or air conditioning....or heat...or much of an exhaust system. It was a BLAST. We laughed our asses off for 5 days and plenty of beautiful (and boring) countryside.
4. Arrived at the Lovely Cats' in CT by (late-) dinner time on Thursday.
5. Friday friends started to arrive and there was much craziness and last minute running around before my birthday party.
6. Saturday, my friends who arrived early and I hid in the basement while the Lovely Cats and Lithus pulled off the coup of a lifetime and finished the party prep.
7. Saturday night, I had the best night of my life, bar none, as the Lovely Cats and Lithus threw me a party for my 40th birthday. I had very intentionally kept it small, small, small. 20 people were there. It was a once in a lifetime event for me and everything a 40th birthday should be.
8. For a few days, we recovered.

The rest...

Here's the big news, first ~ we're moving to Malaysia. Lithus goes Sunday out of JFK. I join him the end of the month. I've also learned there's no way to build up to it so I just drop it like that. rofl. Don't know for how long ~ six months or 16 years. It depends on so many factors, not the least of which is how much we like Malaysia and living in Kuala Lumpur. He will be logging in the darkest jungles of Borneo 7-10 days a month and we will be in the city the rest of the time. I do expect it to be a while given that we are too much about the adventure to not find a way to enjoy living overseas.

But there's still more ~ FALL INTO ME is available for preorder on Amazon and the proofs got sent back to NY yesterday. Meanwhile, I am writing on Carter Anne's story, too. That got hung up for a bit because I forgot for a while that I write trashy romance novels and not great literature. Instead of just letting my male character be an archetypal Super Man, I tried to make him just an ordinary guy ~ only there was no conflict unless he was indeed the son of the influential politician who managed to get Carter Anne her job in DC (unbeknownst to her, of course). So, I gave in and let him be the archetype and am moving forward once again.

On a related note, and I feel remarkably guilty making this about me and my career because it is so much bigger than just that, HOWEVER my fabulous editor who has been considered THE premiere editor of romance novels for years now actually died on the 28th of September. She had taken a leave of absence at the beginning of summer, explained I would have to write Bobby's story without her but she would be back in time for Carter Anne's and we would pow wow about where we would go with my career and all that once she got back in the first week of October. Turns out, the leave was for cancer treatments. It was a slow moving, not terribly aggressive form of cancer and she was doing great and then...she died on the 28th. So who knows what happens now. *sigh* It's so strange to think I won't ever hear "Pobble! Kate!" when I answer the phone again.

Lithus is no longer working for New Company but is now working for Newer Company. New Company couldn't get contracts for the winter. The industry is still reeling from the economic crash last year; Carson released a whole bunch of really good pilots into the pool recently; and there are more helicopters and pilots than there are contracts these days. Plus, as the war in Iraq winds down, there will be still more pilots looking for jobs here. So, we're grateful to be getting out of the country for a bit and for Lithus's reputation that allows him to keep flying. He's actually turned down jobs that have been offered because we are so excited with Newer but the fact that they came his way makes me hugely proud of my love, especially given that one of the companies literally has pilots standing in line at their door and Lithus hadn't even applied with them. Yep, they came to him.

And that, I believe, brings you up to date. *whew*


From here out, I will (hopefully, anyway) be better about posting semi-regularly. And am even considering a travel blog once I hit Malaysia. I'll keep you posted. For now, though,

Those are Pobble Thoughts. That and a buck fifty will get you coffee.

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

Position Available

Needed: Temporary, Full-Time Gestalt Observer

After 40 years, the Gestalt Observer for Pobble Thoughts Inc. is taking a much deserved sabbatical. Qualified applicants will possess the following qualities:
  • flexibility
  • nonjudgmental attitude
  • lack of any sense of personal self
  • ability to maintain composure under duress and/or unusual situations
  • great sense of humor
  • a notable lack of need to run screaming
Position is expected to last 4-6 weeks. Please forward resumes, with cover letter and chocolate requirements, to HR Manager, c/o Pobble Thoughts.

Those are Pobble Thoughts. That and a buck fifty will get you coffee.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

The Adventure Continues

We left Medford Friday.

We arrived at Crow's house that evening. Spent two lovely days and nights being Aunt Mame and Uncle Lithus.

Left there Sunday.

Arrived in Wendover, NV Sunday night.

Left there Monday (today), had lunch in Evanstown, WY and are now spending the night in Sidney, Nebraska (and I don't know how to abbreviate that so...)

By Thursday night, we will be in Connecticut with the Lovely Cats et al.

For those of you who have been in touch and haven't heard from me, that's why. Postings to follow. Because yes, I'm taking notes. :)

Those are Pobble Thoughts. That and a buck fifty will get you coffee.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

For BDS Over at $$






And he knows why.

Those are Pobble Thoughts (a day or two late). That and a buck fifty will get you coffee.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Oh...Wow...Dude...You're Kidding Me, Right?

Yesterday morning, Mechie, Lithus and I met up with our fuel truck driver for breakfast. He's a local to Medford and knows of a great little diner that serves prime rib on Sunday mornings. We had to try it out. When the three of us got there, the driver says "I'm glad to see you. There was an accident on your street earlier this morning, two guys and a gal. All three were killed. I didn't think it was the three of you but I'm still glad to see you."

We all made appropriate noises and shook our heads and assured him that the three of us were just fine and ready to chow down.

Last night, Mechie called Lithus. The "gal" was none other than CMFTW from Friday's post.

Oh...wow...dude...you're kidding me, right?

Nope, seriously. No false alarm. No attention grabbing melodrama. That young woman's dead in an accident this weekend that could've involved Mechie. That just a few weeks ago would've involved Mechie.

Lithus and I held each other pretty tight last night. He's being gentle ~ in that rough way men have ~ with Mechie today. But still...

You're kidding me, right?

Those are Pobble Thoughts. That and a buck fifty will get you coffee.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

On Writing

What an interesting day today was. On the first of the month ~ as I've mentioned here previously ~ I accepted a 1000 words a day challenge. I haven't quite made it but I am doing well, far better than I had feared I might do. Today, though, was an interesting day. The past 17 days, when I worked, I made my deadline. If I didn't make my deadline, I was because I didn't work.

Today, I worked ~ and I didn't make my deadline. What I did do, though, was connect with these two characters, figure out what they feel about each other and why, learn how they got to this place with each other and where they both want to go from here. Honestly, it's the first day like this I've had as a writer and it was more than a little fascinating. My Gestalt Observer was going overtime.

And it reminded me why I like writing.

Those are Pobble Thoughts. That and a buck fifty will get you coffee.

Friday, September 18, 2009

You're Fucking Kidding Me, Right? a Deux

One of the mechanics at N.C. cannot keep it in his pants. Can Not. Mind you, it is beyond me how he gets laid as often as he does, but I have to give him credit ~ somehow or other, the man is a sex machine. Partly, it's because the women he attracts are very much the Officer and a Gentleman, looking to get out of town with anyone and anything that will take them away from where they are because it's gotta be better than here, often looking for a baby daddy, type of women. But still. A charmer, he's not. Nonetheless, he gets laid. And because of the women he has sex with ~ and the lies he tells them in order to have sex with them ~ these women believe/insist they are Mechie's Girlfriend instead of the Chick Mechie's Fucking This Week.

So, the other day, Mechie decides he's getting a little bored with and crowded by the latest CMFTW and stops returning her calls and text messages, which, given her understanding of the relationship, bothers her. But what does she do? In an attempt to garner sympathy...scare the crap out of him...get back at him...get back with him...who the hell knows...she texts him saying she has been hospitalized with the Swine Flu and reminds him he has been exposed. Then she stops responding to his calls or texts.

Here's the thing ~ had Mechie been exposed to Swine Flu, we all would've had to have been quarantined. The helicrew spends too much time in too small a space, and Lithus and I have obviously been exposed to one another's germs. We had managed to be in Mexico when the Swine Flu broke out...and were going to be quarantined in Medford, Oregon. Twenty minutes later and several calm-professional-sounding-but-hiding-the-underlying-panic phone calls to hospitals by Lithus (and one near manic call to the Lovely Cats on my part) and it was established that CMFTW had lied about Swine Flu, her motives had been less than pure, and we weren't going into a five day quarantine at the helibase. And TTG for it.

Nonetheless ~ you're fucking kidding me, right?

So what did Mechie do? Texted her and told her he hoped she was feeling better and he was really sorry he hadn't gotten a chance to say goodbye before he left but he was in Utah on another gig now and wouldn't be back to Medford this summer. Then went and found the next CMFTW ~ who at least hasn't tried to get us quarantined. Yet.

Those are Pobble Thoughts. That and a buck fifty will get you coffee.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Fly, Darlin'

The NTSB report for Roarke's accident has finally been released. While the armchair quaterbacks and the ambulance chasing lawyers will never be silenced, other people have been and that's enough. The blackbox recording transcripts will make you weep ~ and make you proud.

Roarke, you done good. Now fly, Darlin'.

Those are year old and brand new Pobble Thoughts. That and a buck fifty will get you coffee.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

The Money Shot

And this, friends and neighbors, is Lithus, up there, doing what Lithus does. Yeah, I'm proud of my baby.

Those are Pobble Thoughts. That and a buck fifty will get you coffee.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

You're Fucking Kidding Me, Right?

You know the problem with the there I was... story? First, you have to be there.

Back when we were in Utah, Lithus mentioned he was a little frustrated because the helicopter had a hydraulics issue. The issue itself wasn't what frustrated him; these things happen and it wasn't an issue of any great importance. What frustrated him was the fact that when he'd picked up the helicopter, he'd been told there were no issues at all. Boo on bad communication. Still, he dealt with the hydraulics the whole time we were in Utah, even to the point of running the bird with them cut off to make sure, should the worse happen, he'd still be able to land without them. Yep. He could. If the worse case hydraulics situation should occur. He flew the Utah gig, finished it up and flew the helicopter back to New Company's base. When he landed, he told the mechanics that the hydraulics were getting a bit worse and they needed to look at them. Then he walked away.

Last night, he was talking with his immediate boss. Now, his immediate boss and Lithus go back to flight school together. These guys know each other. And it's a bad sign when Boss-Man starts something with "Lithus, do you really want to know this?" Being Lithus, he did.

Turns out it wasn't the hydraulics at all. Ever. It was the transmission. A hydraulics failure is survivable. A transmission failure isn't. The transmission froze within moments of Lithus landing the bird back at base. Thirty minutes earlier, he'd been at 11,500 feet.

You're fucking kidding me, right?

He's good and he's lucky. We've agreed he will continue to tell me these things because, just as Lithus being Lithus means he wants to know, me being me means I want to know. But...wow. Maybe not just before bedtime, any longer.

Those are Pobble Thoughts. That and a buck fifty will get you coffee.

Tuesday, September 08, 2009

Wow... (the post that got put on hold)

Okay, I'll be honest ~ the outpouring that came after the post about the site dying was actually a little embarrassing. HUGELY appreciated and accepted with MUCH love. Just...overwhelming. I have the greatest readers in cyberspace. Not just because of the way you rallied to me but the way you rallied to Lori this past weekend. My life is richer for you in it. Thank you. Sincerely.

So, I'm several days into a 1000 words/day writing challenge. I'm making the average quite nicely so far. It's phrased that way because I bought myself some extra words so Lithus and I could go out one night with new friends.

The challenge was issued by another author, whom I am coming to adore as a person, too. It was taken up by another author, as well, who is familiar to some of you. I won't out him here but he's making his quotas as well and deserved kudos and praise so, if you're reading this ~ YAY YOU! Keep it up.

I found the plot for the book ~ finally. I was 3000 words into the story but found it, TTG.

For dinner the other night, we were going over to our friends' house. He is a wine drinker. Lithus asked me to pick up a bottle of Australian shiraz. Guess what happens when you ask someone ~ okay, what happens when you ask me ~ to pick up shiraz given that I don't know the difference between a shiraz and Mad Dog (except that a shiraz has a cork so it's gotta be a little classier, at least)? You get three bottles of wine chosen because they have cute labels. Yep. The guys drank cute wine. Here are 2 of the three labels (I couldn't find a picture of the third one but it had a gecko-ish critter on it and was very cute, trust me.)


Penguins. Little Penguins. Little, Australian penguins. What's not cute about this? (especially considering we all know how Lithus loves his penguins!)


Not only is the name Fat Bastard great, but it's a smiling hippo. Infinite cuteness.

After the last post, LRNs left me this comment:
Consider why you blog. Is the site "dying" because you've moved on? Radical life changes will do that. Perhaps the place of this blog in your life needs to transform with your own transformation. On the other hand, perhaps if you allow this feeling of change to permeate your blogging, you might find something transformative there too. Maybe a new Pobble Thoughts will come from that. Stop "hanging on" and instead let the spirit take you new places. It's food for thought. We'll see what happens and where we go. Pobble Thoughts may indeed take a totally different turn. It may limp some days and cruise others. But I think I can pretty safely assure you and me that it's not going anywhere.

Again, thanks for last post.

Those are grateful Pobble Thoughts. That and a buck fifty will get you coffee ~ or a glass of cutely-labeled shiraz.

Saturday, September 05, 2009

Blog Light!

This is not the post I had intended to write today. That post was about me and you and other stuff. I've saved it and it will come in the next few days. This post is about Teri. And Lori. And Tim. And Brian. Some of you know Lori. She's the GNightGirl over at This Just In. Teri is her sister. Tim is Teri's husband. Brian, Lori's son and Teri's nephew. Over the past however many months ~ too many at first and now far too few ~ Lori, her brother-in-law Tim, Teri herself, everyone else who loves Teri, or Lori, or Tim, have been fighting Teri's cancer. Yesterday the cancer won.

Whenever anyone in the community, be it her life community or her cyber one, has a need ~ for a hug, for a supportive word, for a resource, a shoulder, a laugh, a care package to a soldier, any need ~ Lori is the first one there, organizing, calling on, pushing, pulling, supporting, cajoling, badgering...loving. In fact, the title of this post originates with her. As far as I know, she created the blog light. It's similar to the Bat Signal. She told me once during a hard time of my own to remember that if I ever needed anything to just send up the Blog Light and "we'll all come running." Need further proof? Be sure to check out the post immediately prior to the one about Teri. She and Brian were out doing what they do, with pictures to boot. Even during this time, her posts have been beautiful, informative and (although she'll hate my saying this) inspirational. She has actually been concerned about keeping her blog updated. Worried that she was getting too single minded and we weren't enjoying her blog as much. And yet she somehow manages to do all this without being sickly sweet and/or martyred to it. She's as cool as they come.

So, Pobble Readers, please don't comment here. Click on over to Lori's place and tell her she and her family are in your thoughts. Tell her you'll be praying for her. Tell her you're sorry. Tell her whatever but tell her something. I know you don't know her. It doesn't matter. I know it's awkward and weird to leave a comment for someone you don't know. It doesn't matter. Just send her a little support. And thanks.

Those are Pobble Thoughts. And this is where you need to go now.

Thursday, September 03, 2009

Sigh...

I can feel Pobble Thoughts dying. I don't want it to die. I still write great posts in my head while showering or driving. They just don't quite get here. I don't spend as much time reading blogs as I used to. Many of my favorites have moved on to Facebook or Twitter or just don't blog any more. DonDon, Jaded Jersey, Tai, even the Lovely Cats. Many of my other favorites now post so rarely that it's still hard to keep up. And I don't care what anyone says, Facebook and Twitter are not the same for those of us who are reading. I hate to break it to you but finding out which 19th century ruler you most resemble or learning that your cyberfarm just burned but you still managed to save all your cows just isn't as interesting as reading your thoughts on life, the world, the issues that matter to you. And you can't truly express your thoughts on life, the world, the issues that matter to you in 180 words or less. Plus, I imagine that those same people who are tweeting and twitting and facing and booking probably aren't reading over here any more. I know most of them haven't commented here in months. Not that I write for comments or readers. It does, however, lend a sense of this is a good way to stay connected with people that goes away when it appears no one is reading.

Yet I understand why people have either stopped blogging or have slowed waaaay back. After all, that's what started this post: I can feel Pobble Thoughts dying. Maybe, in the end, it will matter that I don't want it to die so will keep it limping along until I pick up steam again. Maybe...it won't. I guess we'll just have to see how it goes.

Those are Pobble Thoughts. That and a buck fifty will get you coffee.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Curious Following

Addendum: MYSTERY SOLVED! Whoo-Hoo! Captain Geek is indeed a friend and does indeed get to claim me as one. In fact, he was the first ever person who could claim me as a friend and vice versa, as we met shortly after our births when I was 6 weeks old and he was first brought home from the hospital. And yes, we've been together for the following 40 years. Which really doesn't suck, if you think about it.

Interesting...I have followers. Now, I've known I have followers. That's not what's interesting. What's interesting is Captain Geek. Captain Geek, you're following me. You have even identified as a friend.


So who are you?

Let me know. I think I know. But I want to make sure. ;)

Those are Pobble Thoughts. That and a buck fifty will get you coffee ~ and hopefully let me know who Captain Geek is!

Thursday, August 27, 2009

A Good Lesson

No matter how good the music, no matter how great it feels to be driving 85 again, no matter how high the heels, it is imprudent to miss your exit after Nephi on I15.

Those are Pobble Thoughts. That and a buck fifty will get you coffee.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Randomness

  • If you ever find yourself in Tooele (Too-IH-lah) Utah, bypass the few chain hotels. They are awfully proud of their Hampton Inn anyway. Stay at the American Inn and Suites. Don't let the motel exterior fool you. And for goodness sake, try the 7:00 pm cinnamon buns they serve in the lobby most evenings.
  • Tooele is a cute little town. Maybe it's not worth a special trip but if you find yourself there for other reasons, it's not the worst place to be. Not by far.
  • Carry sunblock, regardless of what the plan is. The first sunburn in 30 years (literally) sucks.
  • All the years my dad taught me to drive anchor in a convoy are paying off. Driving chase is wicked cool.
  • Daddy never mentioned what to do when you are anchoring a truck and trailer loaded with 700 gallons of jet fuel. Eventually, it becomes as ordinary as anchoring any other vehicle ~ but those first few miles are...interesting.
  • Should you find yourself in Nephi, stay in room 238 of the Best Western. It's $20 more than the other rooms and worth every freaking penny.
  • Don't expect to find much in the way of dinner after 7:00 p.m. in Nephi, Utah. Expect to find even less after 9:00.
  • The closest Wal-Mart, chain drug store and McDonalds are in Payson, 21 miles away. The closest bookstore is in Provo, ~35 miles away.
  • The Payson Starbucks is one of the ones that got closed after the economic crash. This made me sadder than I thought possible for this Dunkin' Donuts girl.
  • Racing the helicopter from the staging area 11 miles away in Mona from the hotel three miles away is wicked cool. I swear if I had another week to get really good on the back roads, I could beat him. Now? Lithus/helicopter 2. Pobble/car 0. *sigh*
Those are Pobble Thoughts. That and a buck fifty will get you coffee.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Morning Conversation with Lithus

I may be the only one amused by us. This may be a one-time thing. Or you may start getting regular reports on our morning conversations. We'll see. For now, this morning went like this...

Lithus: I like weather.
Pobble: I like weather, too.


Those are Pobble Thoughts. That and a buck fifty will get you coffee.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Love-Hate-Life

The hardest part of living on the road is there is so much interesting stuff going on at all times ~ except when it's deadly dull and there's not even anything on television. How do I blog about that? I mean, the crazy, toothless couple and their adult daughters (?) living in the corner rooms of the hotel/flophouse are great characters but even they get dull after a while.

The town where we're spending most of this summer is...curious. On the one hand, I hate it. It's tiny, it's boring, it's same old same old. On the other hand, it's 10 miles away from a really cool little town with funky energy and neat little shops. Plus, in our town itself, we've found Italian food, a great burger joint, Indian food and Chinese. And the best biscuit I've tasted outside of a personal kitchen. The movie theatre is large and comfy and tickets are less than eight bucks. Two cool bars and a couple neat coffee shops. Sounds as if it would be charming, which it is ~ and which it's not.

I've started getting up with Lithus in the mornings ~ or at least a little after him ~ so I'm up around 8:00 am for the first time since I had an office job. Still don't love mornings. Yet I am loving the time together before he goes to work. The other day we got to riffing on something and laughing until we had tears in our eyes. Another morning resulted in a dictionary.com search for the actual definition of the word "bit" and did bit imply small or could you have a large bit of something. (As an aside, this is an excellent example of why we married each other instead of other people ~ we both actually care about this shit) This morning was all about Afghanistan and should we still be in a war over there or not.

Saturday night we met up with a couple guys Lithus has known for years and years and years. One's from Australia. One's from New Zealand. Both are pilots. God, I love pilots. We laughed and drank and talked and debated. Solved some of the world's problems and ran screaming from others. Australians really do call their country Oz and say "mate." New Zealanders really do refer to themselves as Kiwis and hate being thought of as Australian.

My cover flats showed up with the copyedits for the new novel. The back cover write up is horrible. As Lithus put it, they didn't try very hard. The worst part is, however, that they got a whole lot of it wrong. Like the name of the town and the name of the heroine and the state the town is in...yeah. And my internet was down so I couldn't get my editor's phone number, let alone send her an email. Luckily, Crow is willing to be indispensible in all kinds of ways, including sending emails. The back cover will be fixed and all will be well. I just "probably shouldn't use the flats for promotion, what do you think?" Yeah, New York Editor, I think you're probably right.

So it's a brilliant, boring, fascinating time. More cookouts on the truck bed. More poker with the heli-crew. More afternoons, surfing the internet for something to do because dammit, I'm bored. More experiences that don't always make for good blogging but make for great life. I can live with this.

Those are Pobble Thoughts. That and a buck fifty will get you coffee.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Plotting GACK

I need a plot. I have great characters. I have a great setup. I just have no plot.

GACK.

Those are Pobble Thoughts. That and a buck fifty will get you coffee.


Sunday, August 09, 2009

It's Corny But...

..every now and then, I get an email from a reader that touches me. Today, I picked a winner for the latest contest I ran and she is thrilled. Thrilled. She never wins anything. She's had a crappy weekend. She never imagined she'd have a second chance at it once the original winner was announced (the original winner never got back to me so I had to give notice then choose another one). I've made her day, her weekend, possibly her month. Does this sound a little over the top? You should've read the original, unparaphrased version.

For me, this is my job. Marketing and relationship development is as important as the actual writing. I forget that it is often more than just a job. And the truth is ~ as much as I touched her, it's no more than she's touched me.

Those are Pobble Thoughts. That and a buck fifty will get you coffee.

Wednesday, August 05, 2009

One of Those Nights

Lori, over at This Just In, has a posting up about those days when it's really, really good to be you, in that moment. Her post got me thinking about several of those times and how wonderful they were. Then an amazing thing happened...

I had another one.

Last night, Lithus and Mechie were craving steak so they decided (*cough*rationalized*cough*) that it really would be cheaper in the long run if the company bought them a small hibachi rather than steak at a restaurant every time they wanted their red meat fix. Lithus called home to see if steaks sounded good to me. As I was alive, conscious and, well, me, it did only I informed him that our hotel wouldn't allow us to have a grill in the parking lot.

Had I called? Nope. Were there rules posted? Nope. But I know this kind of hotel and they aren't the kind who are going to allow the residents, er, guests, have grills in the parking lot. Or chairs. Or door decorations. Because it's that kind of a hotel and once those things start, it stops looking like a hotel and starts looking like the flophouse it kinda, sorta is ~ at least down here on our end.

We were at an impasse. Until the phone rang and it was Lithus, informing me that he had spoken with the front desk and I was correct. No grills allowed on property. But if I wanted to pour myself a libation and wander down the parking lot, past the hotel's property, we were tailgating at the other end. I opened the hotel room door and, sure enough, there they were, at the other end of the parking lot, off the hotel's property, hibachi on the back of the company truck.




What's a girl to do? I poured myself a libation, wandered down and joined them for steaks, corn on the cob and potatoes. The sun set and we were under the full moon and the stars, listening to U2 and the Dropkick Murphys, because my baby loves me.

It was one of those moments and one of those nights. So I'm going to steal from Lori: tell me. Tell me about one of your those nights. You know you've got 'em...

Those are Pobble Thoughts, with some help from Lori and you. That and a buck fifty will get you coffee.

Tuesday, August 04, 2009

Whoop ~ There It Is


March 2010 ~ which is a damn site closer than it should be. Some interesting things are happening in the publishing industry so we are holding our breath that there will be a third book in this series with the same publishing house. The problem is, generally, you have to be a much bigger name than I to successfully move a series from one house to another so...no contract with my current house for another in this series, no more series. Fingers crossed. And you know ~ know ~ I will keep you posted!

Meanwhile, I'm basking in this just a little before the business end kicks back in again and wanted to share.

Those are Pobble Thoughts. That and a buck fifty will get you coffee.

Monday, July 27, 2009

There's Been A Wedding

Somewhere in the middle of all the craziness, my step-daughter got married. She asked us to be a part of the event so Lithus is now (courtesy of the internet) an ordained officiant in the Church of Secular Humanism (which always makes me giggle just a little) and performed a beautiful ceremony (if I do say so, myself) written by, ta-dah, me. I hope it added a touch of East Coast sophistication to the event. I was honored to be asked.

Lithus prepping the day of...


The words he spoke...

This is the day that the Lord has made. Let us rejoice and be glad in it.

How can we not rejoice and be glad today? Today is the day we stand with Bride and Groom as they proclaim their love for one another and commitment to be joined together in marriage. Who brings this woman to be married? (The Other Father of the Bride Responds) And Bride and Groom stand before us, their friends and family; before God, whom they both love; and most importantly, before each other.

So first, I ask you, the family and friends of Bride and Groom, the people who love them and whom they love, will you support Bride and Groom as they form this new union, help them grow and become everything they can be, both separately and together? (The Congregation responds “we will.”) Thank you.

Luckily, we do not have to ask the same questions of God. Bride, Groom, God’s blessing on your marriage is obvious. Whenever two people come together in love and respect, as you do, we witness God’s intention and blessing. For, according to the Bible, God created man, but he was alone and he was lonely. And God looked at His glorious creation and knew something was missing. So God created woman. When man and woman came together, God looked upon them and knew: this was good.

Yet simply being man and woman together isn’t enough, and that’s why you come here today. To not only be together but to join together, to bind yourselves as husband and wife. This choice has a deeper meaning and a greater implication. As God says to you in John 14:35, “You must now love each other as I have loved you.”

That’s not an easy commandment. For God’s love is all-encompassing. God’s love is unconditional. God’s love is the love from 1 Corinthians 13 which is “patient and kind; not jealous or boastful or proud or rude. Love does not demand its own way. Love is not irritable and it keeps no record of when it has been wronged. It is never glad about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins. Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.”

No, not an easy commandment at all. To succeed in fulfilling such a commandment, you each must come here today in love, friendship, acceptance and respect. Groom, Bride wrote about your “forever eyes” and how they assure her you are with her forever; how you are the missing piece to her puzzle; and how, no matter how hard times get, you always meet her in the middle and are willing to work to resolve your differences. And Bride, Groom speaks of your intelligence, common sense and good judgment. He also knows you are dazzling and spectacular, while loving the fact that you aren’t always the most graceful of women. Perhaps the most striking thing, however, is how often the two of you said the same thing about the other. You both refer to the other as your best friend. You both praise the other’s parenting skills. You value how much in common you share. And you both confide in and lean on the other. This recognition of each other’s strengths ~ and the acknowledgement of the other’s imperfections ~ brings you here today, eyes open and hearts entwined. In other words, in love, friendship, acceptance and respect. All of us who know you and know your love for each other believe in this union and your ability to fulfill God’s commandment, even when it is not easy.

However, Bride and Groom, what we, your friends and family, believe is only so important. What is most important are the two of you and your promises to each other. Do you have the rings? Then let these rings be a symbol of your commitment to each other and a reminder of the love you wish to offer each other.

So Bride, will you take the ring and put it on Groom’s finger, repeating after me:

I, Bride, promise to love you, Groom, as God has loved you. I promise to give honor to this marriage and remain faithful to you. I will wear my loyalty to you like a necklace and write it deep in my heart. And I will love you and demonstrate that love.

And Groom, will you take the ring and put it on Bride’s finger, repeating after me:

I, Groom, promise to love you, Bride, as God has loved you. I promise to give honor to this marriage and remain faithful to you. I will wear my loyalty to you like a necklace and write it deep in my heart. And I will love you with the same love Christ showed the church.

By the speaking of these vows now and the living of them in the years to come, God’s plan is complete. This is indeed the day the Lord has made. We rejoice and are glad in it, as I pronounce you husband and wife. You may kiss the bride.


And the celebration...


Those are Pobble Thoughts ~ white, weddingy Pobble Thoughts. That and a buck fifty will get you coffee.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Lithus is Loving It

My cold turned to laryngitis. My laryngitis has turned into no voice. Nothing. I open my mouth and...silence.

Yeah. He's enjoying it. Perhaps a little too much.

Those are Pobble Thoughts ~ and the only way I can really communicate right now. That and a buck fifty will get you coffee ~ or theraflu.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

A Difference in Perspective

Yesterday, Lithus was on the phone with a friend and former colleague when I heard him say "Actually, we're homeless right now..." and it drew me up short. Over the last two weeks, he had made some comments about the economy and what it is doing to the private aviation industry. While I had heard him, they hadn't really registered. When he finished the conversation, I asked him about it.

Sure enough, he sees us as homeless. He sees this as something that has been more or less forced on us by the demise of Old Company. It's a very interesting perspective. And very different from mine.

What's been forced? Does he have a job that could pay for a home for us? Yep. Am I slowly beginning to build a name for myself that will start paying off in another year or so? Yep. Did we sit down and decide to live this way? Yep, sure did. After all, why pay rent on an apartment that we rarely occupy? All of which, in my world, makes us not homeless but living on the road. At least in my mind.

It's different for him, apparently. Apparently, for him, since we wouldn't have chosen this had O.C. not gone under then it is forced. And that part I do understand. But we could've chosen to stay in our apartment and be apart more often than not (neither one of us *would* have chosen this, but we *could* have chosen this). We could've decided to get a smaller, less expensive place as a homebase of sorts (which we are looking at more seriously, as we are learning Lithus misses having a homebase). However, we looked at those options and decided against them. We chose.

So, I remind myself his feelings are his feelings, even if I don't understand them or understand how he arrived at them. As a sociological observation, though, I'm intrigued. Two people. The same situation. The same discussions. Such very different perspectives.

Those are Pobble Thoughts. That and a buck fifty will get you coffee.

Monday, July 20, 2009

An Aside

Even with all the traveling and all the bouncing around, I still have a job. And I'm particularly pleased about this guest post so wanted to share. Check it out as soon as you can because I'm probably going to be deleting this post, as I don't want the Pobble to be connected to Pauline, via a search of some kind. But I had to share with y'all. :)

Those are Pobble Thoughts, in spite of the name. That and a buck fifty will get you coffee.

Monday, July 13, 2009

And So It Begins


Kermit: Movin' right along in search of good times and good news,
With good friends, you can't lose,
Fozzie: This could become a habit.


Kermit: Opportunity just knocked, let's reach out and grab it,
Together we'll nab it.
Fozzie:Ya! We'll hitch-hike, bus, or yellow cab it.
Kermit (spoken): Cab it?


Kermit & Fozzie: Movin' right along

Kermit: Foot-loose and fancy free.
Gettin' there is half the fun; come share it with me.

Kermit & Fozzie: Movin' right along!

Kermit: Doog-a-doon, doog-a-doon
We'll learn to share the load.
Fozzie: We don't need a map to keep this show on the road.

(Dialogue)Kermit: (looking at the map) Hey, Fozzie, I want you to turn left when you get to a fork in the road.
Fozzie: Yessir: turn left at the fork in the road.(A giant fork appears in a fork in the road)
Fozzie: KERMIT!
Kermit: I don't believe that.

Kermit: Movin' right along we found a life on the highway,
Fozzie: And your way is my way--
Kermit: So trust my navigation.
Fozzie: California here we come, come pie-in-the-sky land.
Kermit: Palm trees and warm sand--
Fozzie: Though sadly we just left Rhode Island.
Kermit: (spoken) We did what?
Fozzie: (spoken) Just forget it.

Kermit & Fozzie: Movin' right along
Kermit: Hey, L.A., where have you gone?
Fozzie: Send someone to fetch us, we're in Saskatchewan.
Kermit & Fozzie:Movin' right along

Kermit: Doog-a-doon, doog-a-doon) You take it, you know best.
Fozzie: Hey, I've never seen the sun come up in the West.
Fozzie: (spoken)
A bear in his natural habitat! A studabaker!

(Dialogue)Kermit: Hey, Fozzie, look up ahead.
(A tall creature is walking on the other side of the quiet empty highway)
Fozzie: What is that?
Kermit: Maybe we should give him a ride.
Fozzie: I dunno. He's pretty big. (The studabaker pulls alongside the creature)
Fozzie: Hey, there. Wanna lift?
Big Bird: Oh, no, thanks. I'm on my way to New York City to try to break into public television!
Fozzie: Ah...hmmm, good luck.
(The studabaker keeps on moving the other direction)

Kermit & Fozzie: Movin' right along
Fozzie:We're truly birds of a feather,
We're in this together--
Kermit: And we know where we're goin'.
Fozzie: Movie stars with flashy cars and life with the top down.
Kermit: We're stormin' the big town.
Fozzie: Yeah! Storm is right, should it be snowin'?
Kermit: (spoken) No, I don't think so.

Kermit & Fozzie:Movin' right along
Fozzie: Do I see signs of men?
Kermit: Yeah, "welcome" on the same post that says "come back again."
Kermit & Fozzie: Movin' right along

Kermit: Foot-loose and fancy free.
Fozzie: You're ready for the big time--
Kermit: Is it ready for me?

Kermit & Fozzie: Movin' right along!
~ The Muppet Movie
c. Kenny Ascher and Paul Williams





No bets on which one of us is Kermit and which is Fozzie.





Those are Pobble Thoughts. That and a buck fifty will get you coffee.

Monday, July 06, 2009

You Mean You Don't Know?

Lots of questions about where I'm moving. After all these years of reading and writing Pobble Thoughts you can't read my mind yet? Come on, people! I thought we had a bond here. *rolls eyes at self*

Since realizing I haven't spelled it out here, I figure it's time: We're moving...nowhere. And everywhere. We've decided to pack up, throw out, donate, minimize, clear out and store all our stuff and live on the road. :D:D:D:D:D:D:D Last night, our soon to be son-in-law came over and loaded up a truck AND trailer of furniture and household goods (remember the days when anything from Target could be considered "really, really nice" furniture?). We'll take them the beds this weekend. Yep ~ everything.

Lithus works for a new company now (his former employer finally laid him ~ and almost everyone else ~ off) but New Company is a smallish company, unlike Old Company used to be, so he works for contract rather than on a salary. If he's not working, he's not getting paid. I did the sit-at-home-and-wait thing for too long with the SGM. Even this last year with Lithus at O.C., I stayed home because Lionel couldn't travel well. Now? Now, my work can be done anywhere and Damned if I'm missing out on the adventure any longer. But if Lithus is going to be working that much and I'm going to be along, there's just no reason to keep an apartment and pay rent and utilities on a place we aren't. The N.C. pays for hotel and Lithus's expenses so all we have to pay for is my transportation and food.

At this point (because I have learned this is Totally subject to change at an hour or two notice), we are expecting to be either on the southern coast of Oregon fighting fires there, or back down in Vegas on a couple construction contracts. N.C. expects to have work for him through the summer at least. After that, he's got a lead on a job that starts late September in (drum roll please) Malaysia. Meanwhile, N.C. has also put bids on jobs in Australia and Africa; a friend of Lithus's has a lead on jobs in Chile and Portugal and they need another pilot (meaning Lithus); and N.C. is also working on more contracts in Mexico. AND Lithus has his c.v. out on job sites and has started getting requests for more information (one from Milan. Yes, MILAN, ITALY. Why would this suck?)

It's a totally new thing for both of us, living contract to contract and just having faith that the next gig will show up before we're out of cash from the last one. We have both always wanted to live this way and have never been with the person who would do it with us ~ until now. This is literally the culmination of a life-long dream for me. I remember being 11 when I saw my first road show (The Wiz) and realizing that OMG Not Everyone Lives In A House. That was it. I was done and this has been my goal since then. I'm thrilled beyond words and scared out of my mind. And happier than I have ever been in my life. :D:D:D:D:D:D:D

I also have faith that one of these days, our travels are going to take us near you, wherever you are.

For now, though, I have empty boxes taunting me so must get back to sorting and packing...

Those are Pobble Thoughts. That and a buck fifty will get you coffee.

Saturday, July 04, 2009

East Coast v. West Coast, In A Nutshell

When I have moved up, down and finally away from the east coast, my friends understood the time crunch that comes with moving. If the only way we got to see each other before I left was for them to come over and talk to me while watching me pack boxes, guess what? They came over and talked to me while watching me pack boxes. Usually they brought coffee because they are my friends and I am me. Helping wasn't the point, wasn't requested, wasn't expected (was sometimes given, though, but sometimes not). The point was having some last moments together to talk and laugh and experience one more story together.

When my friends moved, across town or across the country, I went and talked while watching them pack. Sometimes I helped; sometimes I didn't. That wasn't the point.

The few people who call us their friends out here have been told we want to see them, we want some time with them before we leave, we just have one week to get everything packed. We have invited them over, not to help, but to have some more time together before we leave the area.

Every Single One Of Them has said thanks but no thanks. One woman even said "Yeah, right, sure. I'm really gonna do that. But you call if you've got a free night to come over to our house."

Which is, in a nutshell, why I don't mind leaving the Pacific Northwest. At all.

Those are Pobble Thoughts. That and buck fifty will get you coffee.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

What Happens in Vegas...

...is actually pretty boring, really. After being told we would be in the Reno area through the weekend, Lithus came home Monday evening and said we were heading to Vegas for the week. A one day consrtuction job on Wednesday followed by a day or two on the same construction site Sunday or Monday (those that are coming up). So, he flew; I rented a car. He came straight to Henderson, NV. I got to spend the night in Beatty, The Gateway to Death Valley next to Nevada's Largest Nut and Candy Shop! Because really, who wants to miss that?

Now I can say that I've wandered the Strip, seen the fountain show at the Bellagio and eaten at the Harley Davidson Cafe. We went through the Freemont Experience and had wicked strong drinks in Hugo's Cellar. Tonight, we are hoping to catch a drag show.

But the truth is, I'm underwhelmed. Maybe it's because I don't gamble. Maybe it's because I don't like tourist traps. But should you find yourself out here, I would really seriously suggest you opt out of the Strip and head to Henderson. Remedy's is open 24 hours a day. The movie theatre is quite nice. And the Omelet House is worth the drive from Reno, let alone from Vegas.

But my favorite part of Vegas or Henderson? This very misplaced Bostonian is less than two miles away from a Dunkin Donuts. For this week at least. :)

Those are Pobble Thoughts. That and a buck fifty will get you a (Dunkin Donuts iced) coffee.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Back in the US

We are now back in the States (as of about 48 hours) and I finally have internet access. Last Thursday (or Friday? the days blur) we got the call that the contracts had indeed fallen apart and Lithus needed to return the helicopter back to the US. So we pushed hard and got her back here this weekend. Mind you, "here" is Sparks, NV which is quite a change from where I've been recently. LOL

There is so much to say and I can't put any of it into words. We have done so much ~ and really not all that much beyond flying in a helicopter. But Lithus and I have:

flown over the jungles of Mexico
flown over the oceans of Mexico
landed in major airports and tiny airstrips
lived in fleabags and 5-star hotels
learned to communicate enough in Spanish to get through a security check
had our sex toys found by VERY EMBARRASSED customs agents
sat on the beaches of Playa del Carmen and Acapulco and Cancun and Tulum
confirmed I don't like tourist areas but love local spots
slogged my luggage through 105+ degree weather
and so much more... and am LOVING every minute of it.

It feels so much like everything I've ever wanted. Everything makes me happy. And not just the beaches or fine meals. Delays are a good time. Customs searches are fascinating. Walking the 5 miles/day through and around the airfields to get all the paperwork handled in temperatures ranging from 95 to 110 is an adventure. Neither one of us can imagine ever going back to lives we were living before ~ and we were living more interesting lives than many people.

So, we're here in Sparks this week. Lithus will make a one-day jump down to Sacramento or somewhere to get the helicopter certified to fight fires here in the US and then we'll go...somewhere else. Probably CA or OR for the fires there. Meanwhile, his company is still trying to work out contracts with other companies in Mexico so we're hoping to get back there. Plus, he is continuing to apply for jobs overseas (the Caribbean, the Middle East, Malaysia, Hawaii [not overseas, I understand, but a very different culture than from the mainland]) and lots of contract work so we can either be based in somewhere interesting or keep living like carnies and travel. Even Sparks, NV is fun and an adventure when it's one stop on a long list of stops.

This is far from the end of Pobble Thoughts. Yet I get the feeling that posts may be a little more sporadic and even more stream of consciousness than usual. I'm still around, though. It's just gotten interesting. Why would I leave now? ;) Pictures soon as we have a cord for the camera. Until then,


Those are Pobble Thoughts. That and a buck fifty will get you coffee.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

What I Learned On the Way to Merida

My husband is a stud (even more than I'd realized).
You can get sunburned in a helicopter.
Nothing is as cool as that first take-off.
Unless it's the first hard bank.
Listening to air traffic control is as cool as I'd always hoped it would be.
Listening to guapo es spouso be a part of air traffic control conversaton is even cooler than I thought it would be.
It is possible to take a nap with the window open, the headset on, getting a sunburn and going 120 knots half a mile above the earth's surface.
120 knots is 160 mph to you and me.
Men with big guns get their way, even if they only want it because they are bored.
Flight plans get filed in one office.
The Aeropuerto de Commandancia has to stamp the flight plan in another office.
They are next door to each other.
No, you can't cut through the door ajoining the offices.
Dozing with your head on your leather bag in the shade of a helicopter is cool as shit, even when it's hotter than hell.
Living the life of a gypsy or a carnie is even better than I had imagined at 11 years old.
Running away with the circus was a great idea when I was a kid.
Running away with el piloto y el capitan is even better as an adult.
My husband is a stud (even more than I'd realized).

Those are Pobble Thoughts. That and a buck fifty will get you coffee.

Monday, June 08, 2009

What Happened Next

Thank you all for your support around Lionel's death. It was a hard week. Flora was great. Lithus was great. And the house was very empty. Life, however, goes on.



Thursday morning, Lithus called for my morning phone call (he always calls before he leaves the hotel for work) and said "Can you be on a plane tonight?" At which point I said "No way in hell." Then we argued a bit until he finally assured me that I didn't need to get everything done that he had asked me to do and I let go of needing to do everything he had asked me to do. Without those constraints, the answer was yes, actually, I could be on a plane that night. And so I was.



By Friday evening, I was in Mexico. He met me at the Cancun airport with his own suitcase. Since we hadn't had a honeymoon back in February, he decided the first two days of my time in Mexico would be honeymoon. We went to Cancun Desire. Oh my. It was everything you'd want a honeymoon to be. More.

Sunday, we were back in Cancun proper. We spent the afternoon tooling around the touristy areas but made it "home" ~ old town Cancun ~ in time for dinner with the crew. And here we are. Maybe until tomorrow. Maybe until next month. Who knows.

Holding the monkey made me miss Lionel's soft furriness. Seeing the man walk his dog made me tear up. And life goes on. In unusual and wonderful ways.

Those are Pobble Thoughts. That and a buck fifty will get you una cafe.

Monday, June 01, 2009

Lionel

Whenever possible, I celebrate the finishing of a book with time at a spa. Today was the Bobby's Book Spa Day. I was gone for about 5 hours. When I came home, I could hear Lionel barking from the street.

Upstairs, the place was covered in vomit and poop. He was on the kitchen floor, unable to get up. I cannot think what his day was like. I made it home in time and that is what matters. I picked him up and he collapsed his head on my shoulder. He never does that.

Without even putting him down, I called the vet.

It was fast and appeared painless.

There may be more later. There may not be.

That's all I got tonight.

Addendum ~ The hardest part is when I realize he isn't coming back. He's not at a play date. He's not hiding or asleep under his blankets. The vet won't be calling to say I can come pick him up. Lionel just...isn't coming back. As Lithus pointed out, it happened suddenly. It was expected but he was fine this morning. This morning. And now he isn't coming back. That's when I start to cry again.


Sunday, May 31, 2009

Credit

First, THANK YOU to everyone who commented on the previous post. It's lovely. And still a little weird to realize I have written three novels now.

Second, I gotta give credit where credit is due. Yes, I wrote the damn thing. No, I'm not minimizing that. But seriously...


Apprus, who is the Southern Gentleman that I turned for when I needed Southern Gentlemanliness. He was able to answer questions from emotions to sex to movies. If my hero is accurate in any way, Appsrus is why.





And my critique group, who became my critique group without any of us even realizing it, I think:


Crow, who continues to be indispensable. Period.










The Divine M, who's emails ran from plaintive to motivating to flat out demanding as she asked "Where are my pages?" Nothing keeps one quite as motivated to write as knowing the Divine M is waiting for her pages.






Dennis R. How I ever wrote a story or novel or a sentence without knowing him is beyond me.




And always, the FE, for being there during the icky times


Yes, I wrote it. Would I, could I, have written it without them? Yep. But it wouldn't have been as easy, as fun, as good, or as timely without them.

I'd say more but it'd get embarrassing.

Those are Pobble Thoughts and Pobble Thanks. That and a buck fifty will get you coffee ~ or whatever the five of them would like.

(ed. note ~ All these images are copyrighted by someone who's not me. Thank you to them, as well, for their use here. And in case you were wondering, those aren't the real people they are meant to represent. Appsrus is far more handsome and Dennis R may be a POC, but his C isn't green. Nor is he an amphibian ~ not that there's anything wrong with being an amphibian...some of my best friends are amphibians...)