Traveling Sparks Novel Idea

**Audio version of this blog can be found here!**

I’ve been on the road since the last day of school which I believe was somewhere around the 20th of June. An opportunity arose where I could tag along with someone’s work trip and visit family and friends along the way. I was in a pretty bad mental place the last couple of months of school. My class was particularly trying and it left me feeling drained every single day. I didn’t want to be around other people because work took every last bit of give-a-shit I had. My figurative give-a-shit mug was a barren wasteland. And to make matters worse, I don’t think I was a very nice person. The kids took that from me too. I didn’t have a way to replenish myself and it left me without nice things to say. It was a horrible cycle I was more than happy to break.

So fast forward to the last couple of weeks. I managed to get out of dodge. Even if it’s mostly involved the inside of various hotel rooms. At the end of the day, it’s the me time I’d been missing for more than two months. Me time that I not only needed, but was essential to my emotional survival. If you can’t love, take care of, care for yourself, then how can you be expected to do it for others?

So vacation number three this year… can you call the others “vacation” though? The first was a conference and the second was… okay the second was basically bowling and Napa. I guess it counts. I digress. What better way to start a mental health trip then with Harry Potter World? Err… Universal Studios. Y’all know I’m a little obsessed as it is, well I went ahead and bought a gold pass, which has virtually no blackout dates. My hands are tied, I will be forced to go back again in the next year to utilize my pass. Besides, how else am I expected to drink butterbeer?! Oh and I got to have it hot…. hot or frozen, I will never be able to decide which is better. But both are worth the 19-hour drive. Oh, and after I got the email saying they are tearing down Jurassic Park in July to make room for Jurassic World, I had to ride the waterfall one last time. I will miss JP. RIP my friend.

Second stop was Ventura. Due to a room mix up, I found myself on a couch during our Universal stay, so I was really looking forward to a bed. Ventura has a lot going on but I’ve always been one of those people who get on well by myself. And after the few months, I’d had, I welcomed the idea of a private hotel room with just me, my laptop, and I. While I appreciate visiting new areas and all they have to offer, for me, this trip wasn’t about that. I did manage to venture to a nice theatre about twenty minutes away in the heart of downtown Ventura. I’ve become addicted to reclining leather seat theatres. It’s truly the little things in life.

After a week in Ventura, it was on to the next leg of our trip, where I was warned there wasn’t much to do. More then that, it would be hot. What the heck is hotter then the eighty degrees I’d been melting in for a week and a half already? Oh try one-hundred-five. Blah! On the bright side, there was someone I’d wanted to meet up with. A friend of a friend, I’d only met very briefly about a year ago. I’d heard several times from said mutual friend how much I’d like this person if we only had the chance to hang out. How much we had in common, etc. Honestly, with eyes like Sinatra and a good sense of humor from what I could remember, I figured why not reach out. Whats the worst case? We meet up for like 10 min and then I come up with a reason to bail. I could do that. Mom, bless her, even texted me an out. Not once, but three times. She even called. Later she told me she just wanted to make sure I was okay and that this person didn’t turn out to be a weirdo or something. She made me laugh so much. I love that woman. But as it turned out I didn’t need one. Didn’t want one. In life, there are rare moments when the universe and the gods above seemingly come together in serendipitous harmony. We got together the next evening too. It was like I’d met someone I’m supposed to be best friends with. Someone I’m supposed to have in my life for a long, long time. Maybe even should have before. We’ve even lived near one another and just didn’t know it. But here’s the shitter. The stars have other plans and I swear to whoever is listening, they only like to tease. Figures I’d meet someone pretty damn amazing only to have this person live states away with a plan that keeps things that way for the foreseeable future. Fucking stars can bite me right now.

So what’s a gal to do about unfamiliar territory and emotions and things that sound crazy to any sane person and road trips and life and stuff? Write. It is my go to after all. The pages have been pouring out of me. Maybe not cohesive yet. But a good outline for sure. Maybe not what I took this trip to write, but pages be pages and I’ll take them. I believe when life gives you lemons, it’s best to either chuck those fuckers out the window or write about all the things you could do with them.

I’m in Fallon NV currently. It’s pretty desolate here. My apologies to anyone who lives here. I think it’s quaint how people keep saying, “Isn’t this place beautiful.” Ummm…. sure. I did find a Starbucks in the Safeway about two blocks from my hotel. So there is coffee in my future. The hotel maid even invited me to her house, so that I’d get out of the “stuffy hotel” where I appeared lonely. It was a sweet offer but I declined. We head out Saturday morning and on to the Susanville area to visit with more family for a day before we make the trek home. On the plus side, I may have ordered the Oculus Go today. Which means it will be delivered the day after I get home. I had an opportunity to play with the Oculus Rift recently. Who freaking knew… wow. Oasis here I come. I’m not much of a “gamer” per say and games often make me nauseous, but what I find super appealing is the movie features. Apparently, I can watch Netflix and Hulu. Oh and there’s an app called Bigscreen where up to 12 people can join and watch a movie in VR together in real time from anywhere. Ummm how cool is that? There are about a thousand other ways to find inspiration. I don’t have a PC being a Mac girl, so it left me with the Go as the only viable choice. The novel I’m supposed to be working on is a future tech YA which has a virtual world. So I’m considering this work study. I’ll take the homework with a smile and I’ll enjoy spending some time in VR.

I have been reading, even though I know there hasn’t been a review recently. I just finished re-reading the three book Wayward Children series by Seanan McGuire: Every Heart a Doorway; Down Among the Sticks and Bones; Under the Sugar Sky. If you haven’t read my reviews, check them out, or just pop over to Amazon, Audible, or Barns and Noble and buy it. Totes worth the investment. Amazing little books. Think Alice in Wonderland meets Peter Pan meets Frankenstine. One of my favorite series, I can’t wait till the next book comes out. Rumor is, she’s contracted for three more. Woot woot!

I leave you with my poolside companion today, a wild little beastie.

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