Sunday, September 17, 2006

Sunday hodge podge

The cleansing part of the cleanse finally hit my GI tract this morning at 5 AM. Must be the senna. I didn't even need the salt water flush to get things moving, just waking up and going to the bathroom -- again -- and there it was, accompanied by cramps and a bit of nausea from the cramps. Lovely. It isn't as if it takes a lot to get me moving since I move regularly anyway, but this felt more like an emergency evacuation. Now I know why I needed mint tea -- to calm everything back down again.

I have another quart of cayenne lemonade in front of me and my mind is churning with stories and articles and ideas for more of both. They haven't touched me and run away like we used to do when playing blind man's bluff as kids; they are sticking around. I wonder if the emergency evacuation had anything to do with my sudden clarity of thought and determination.

Kind of reminds me of the joke about the body and who was really in charge. All the body parts thought they were most important but they really found out who was boss when the anal sphincter refused to open and allow passage of debris. Fever fired up the rest of the organs and the brain couldn't think or order the rest of the body parts and functions around. As always, the asshole wins.

At any rate, I received my copy of Sun Signs for Writers yesterday and dove right into the chapter on Aquarius, my sign. Sagittarius was my next stop and then on to Ares. I'll go through the rest of the book chapter by chapter and reread Aquarius and Sagittarius but I have noticed a pattern emerging -- and not the pattern of the chapters and how they are organized. The pattern is in the the tone of the book. I have to see if the pattern continues before I make my final judgment, but it should be interesting to see what emerges.

I have been asked (actually told) to put together an itinerary for my mother and sisters to follow when they get here so they can see as much as possible. Mom wanted to go to Montana but where she wants to go is a 12-hour trip one way and I don't see that happening, especially since they aren't willing to spend any money for motels. I did want to go to Monument National Park and see the eroded sandstone formations and that is only a 5-hour trip to Grand Junction. We could go there and get back in one day, but it would be a very long day and would mean driving at night through Vail Pass and the tunnel, which isn't difficult if the weather is good. I'm not sure that will be the case next month since there has already been a killing frost in the higher elevations as of last night and this morning. I hope John didn't get caught out in the freeze since he said he was planning to hike this weekend. At least it didn't rain this time.

I have talked a friend who teaches special needs children to collaborate on some articles and possibly a few fictional accounts of her life at school. She sparked the idea during a phone conversation yesterday and, yes, she is the greatest con artist I have ever known. She knows how to con just about anyone out of the doldrums in the midst of the horse latitudes and back into laughter without the person realizing they were ever becalmed on mental seas. I know she helps me see the brighter side of things when I am feeling less than stellar -- and she calls me an optimist. Well, there are no rose colored glasses over my eyes, just the honest belief that eventually winds come even to the horse latitudes.

I also watched The Bridges of Madison County again. I thought I remembered Francesca having a younger daughter, one who was born of her liaison with Robert, but I must have been mistaken because she wasn't there when I saw the movie yesterday. I did miss the first few minutes of it, but I watched it all the way to the end. I still think the movie, and thus the book, over rated, and I remember reading it, although I fought against it the whole time Oprah and her book club gushed over it. There are moments that the story is sweet and romantic, but very few of those. The whole thing is a bit plausible. I doubt there would ever be a time a farm wife living near a small town in Iowa would ever be able to get away with having four days of intimate dinners, conversations, walks and sex without the neighbors knowing about it or that if the woman was so stifled by her farm life, having had to give up teaching because her husband expected her to raise their two children (at the point of the story well past needing to be taken care of) would balk at the chance to run away with a photographer who travels the world, especially if she loves him. It cannot have been only duty that tied her to the farm and her family or even just the thought of how it would affect her children, although that is possible. The motivations do not ring true. I'm not saying it isn't possible, but that it is highly improbable. There must have been something between Francesca and Richard, her husband, when they met in Italy after World War II to make her want to marry him and leave her home and everything she's known, and not just the security of being able to walk the golden streets of America because that would mean she was more interested in comfort and financial security than love, and that kind of person would have walked away from her family without a backward glance or she would have stayed if it meant she would have felt more financially secure where she was.

The story doesn't tug at my heart the way a good romance should and it certainly doesn't make the trivial mistakes and inconsistencies disappear because of the beauty and poignancy of the relationship of two people having found each other and faced the tortures of the damned to be together. I don't expect such grand love affairs in all the romances that move me, but there has to be an innate sense of rightness of two people getting together that makes the story worthwhile even in a little romance, like the ones penned by Nicholas Sparks. His stories have an intimate quality that Waller's story lacks even now. It's not wonder none of Waller's other romances made it to the top of the heap and were so easily forgotten. They didn't have that intimate spark that burns so cleanly and brightly at the center of little romances and grand affairs.

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