In Which Our Heroine Is Still Thinking About Gingerbread

8 November 2003

So. I feel about like I did yesterday: better than earlier in the week, still not all the way to fabulous. But I'm working on it. My voice is approaching normal; it's the low and raspy end of normal, and I can't sing, but it's sounding better each day. I'm not very good at not singing, we found out yesterday.

I drove out to Hastings, which is where our county seat is situated; it's also Michelle's ancestral home. Filed the homesteading papers: this is now our homestead. Which means lower property taxes on it. Rah for the lower property taxes. I also went to the post office and the library, where the librarian showed me a very nifty way to get biographical and critical articles online. Problem is, I need a PIN as well as my library card number. I have no such critter. So I have to go back to the library and get one. This is not a huge hardship (the library is two minutes away), but it would have been nice not to have to go two days in a row.

I do have books I can return, though -- Bruce Coville's Fortune's Journey, Vivian Vande Velde's A Hidden Enchantment, Gail Carson Levine's The Fairy's Mistake and Princess Sonora and the Long Sleep, and as of this morning Maud Hart Lovelace's Betsy and Joe. And now I've started into Vande Velde's Curses, Inc., and Other Stories, and if I don't get myself showered and out the door, I may finish that and return it as well. Counting this one, I believe I'm down to four on the pile to read for this contract work, plus the articles I'll get to read when I get my PIN. Four library books, that is; I have two more from our own library I should read. And then...grown-up books! A mixture of books! Possibly even some non-fiction!

And still lots of work on articles, of course.

There are all kinds of things to do around here now that I'm feeling better. It's chilly out, but it's not going to get consistently warmer, so it would be nice to get the last of the yard stuff done if I can. Buck Bump had their snow machines going, the paper said, and there's a little part of me that wants to drive up and just see, just drive past and admire the snow on Buck Bump saying, "Hello, the Mrissa, you are home!" But that's more than a touch ridiculous. And anyway, if I really wanted to have my city give me a welcome-home hug, I know exactly what I would do. I would drive up to the downtown Dayton's-I-mean-Marshall-Field's. I would eat lunch in the basement of Dayton's, where they have all the fabulous little deli salads. I would take the escalators (not, for heaven's sake, the elevator) up through Dayton's, stopping and poking at things on the way, and then I would go to the Eighth Floor Auditorium! And see Charlie and the Chocolate Factory! And then I would eat gingerbread! And give away the red-hot eyes!

It opens today. I'm not doing it today; C.J. is sick and his parents are in town and I told him we were going to it together no matter what. We've had it planned for a year and a half or maybe more. Also, I'm going with the folks at Thanksgiving. Don't think I won't do it twice. Don't think I won't do it three or four or five times if I find out no one is taking the small cousins or Miss Siri Ann has never been or something ridiculous like that. (Hey! I'll bet Robin has never been! Stella! Eighth Floor Auditorium! It goes until New Year's, so we have plenty of time if you wanna.)

Occasionally it bothers me that we haven't planned to go to any lutefisk suppers. Then I remember that I hate lutefisk; that lutefisk, in fact, is something that we serve outsiders to see if they really-really-truly want to marry into our families; that the only reason the ancestors came up with lutefisk is that they were starving and needed a way to make the tails and heads of the fish edible. Then I feel better. But I still check the listings in the paper and wonder to myself about what else they would have and whether it might be fun to go anyway, for the cookies or the sausage or what have you. We shall see.

If I was feeling better, I'd be going to Art Attack up in St. Paul today. If I was feeling better and someone wanted to go with me. If a frog had wings. Still, it is there to attend, and that's enough for now. I am the queen of Twin Cities events! The queen, I tell you! Sometimes the queen from my futon-divan, but still the queen!

I think I'm pretty good at being happy. It's confusing sometimes because I'm not very good at being content. I always want to be doing something better, something more. But happy, Lord yes. Not being content doesn't get in the way of being happy. Not when there's gingerbread in the world, and also lutefisk suppers for me to shun or not as I please.

Also it gets confusing because I'm not a patient person, but I am a stubborn person. Some people tried to tell me that writers need patience. Wrong. Patience is useful for writers. Makes it easier. But what writers need is a good dose of stubborn.

And printer ink. And wise writers will not pack their spare printer ink in half-empty boxes of Christmas cards, where it will take them nearly a month to find it. I'm just sayin'.

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