December 30, 2009
My daughter is on a major road trip from Santa Barbara to Bend and Ashland and back. They stopped in for our family vacation in Pismo and then took off for SF and then on up the road to Bend. Their road trip was full of adventure. First the car they were going to drive broke down, they had to rent a car in SF and that took about six hours through Zip Car, and by the time they got to Bend, it was 4 in the morning. The three of them had been singing and drinking coffee. I’m sure my ex was glad to see them arrive safely.
In Nebraska here, it’s been snowing and it’s cold as hell. We are looking out the window and avoiding going out there. It looks like a place you wouldn’t want to go at all. How I lived to be 18 in N.H. is beyond me. I remember going out in weather like this to take care of the sheep and horses. Of course we had mittens and long johns, gloves and boots, hats and scarves. I brought my bikini so I could go swimming in the pool, shorts for working out in the gym. I don’t think that the bikini is going to work in the Nebraska winter, but if I decide to go streaking around this MFA program later this evening, I’ll have Mark snap pictures and we’ll post them directly to this blog.
Actually, people tell me that Nebraska was peopled by German Lutherans, good solid folk, but all the students seem very friendly and laid back and I get a good feeling about them. They’re well read, very lively and funny. I like the students immediately and the faculty also. The Lied Lodge is beautiful, huge beams and our room is very comfortable and has a big window looking out over snowy fields.
I’m reading Last Night in Twisted River by John Irving. Then I’m going to read Thorn Hall. I got some good books for Christmas, and I plan to read more, think more, run more, swim more, sleep more etc in 2010. Obviously, I need to find a way to stretch out time. Can you stretch time? Really?
There was a big family discussion over the holidays about what reality is and whether or not it differs from a belief. For example if you believe in God, that’s your belief. But if you believe that global warming does not exist, you’re just wrong. It might be your belief, Sarah P… but you are wrong. And if there is too big a gap between your beliefs and reality, they put you away in the funny farm as in… you believe that California is about to fall into the ocean or you believe you are being followed by little green aliens or you believe Elvis is alive — any of these beliefs can put you away in the funny farm if your belief is making it difficult for you live your life normally. And what do they call living your life normally?
Do writers want to live normal lives? I’ll find out here at this writing program here in Nebraska. I’ll get back to you on that.