So far 2006 has proven to be a bit…bumpy. We had a lovely time with family and friends in Connecticut. We arrived to snow and cold and houses decked out in holiday splendor. Luckily Tom rented a four wheel drive Volvo so traveling was easy. Xander was awestruck by the snow; when he saw it for the first time he couldn’t resist lying down in it. New Year’s Eve, Tom and I had some alone time at his sister’s party: a nice intimate group with great conversation and good food.
Before the trip I had been longing for the kind of storms I had known in Vermont, the kind that silences the world and forces it to come to a halt. A damn good Nor’easter. Well we got one—on the day we were scheduled to fly out. And like good ex-northerners we got in the car to drive to the airport (what’s a snowstorm to us?) only to find out when we got there our flight was cancelled. Back we went through the woods and snow to Grandma’s house. Yes, it was a pain and it set things back but what a glorious sight. All that heavy beautiful snow and the quiet of the world.
While we were away, our furnace was being worked on. All during my vacation I had this feeling that we would be coming home to a problem. Maybe no heat or something worse. What could be worse than no heat? Maybe a giant oil spill. And that’s exactly what we came home to at midnight. A house that smelled like the Exxon Valdez. I had suggested that we call the guy a couple of times while we were away—that’s how strong my intuition was—but I’m not sure if that would have helped anything because it was Tom, who actually used his brain (a damn good one, I might add) and figured out all the places that was holding mini oil spills and circulating it through our house. You see, someone was very careless and was not forthcoming about his carelessness. Hopefully it will finally be fixed today and then the monstrous work of cleaning linens, rugs, and upholstery begins, because the smell of my house, usually so comforting and pleasant, turns my stomach.
I just hope this is not a portent of things to come.
Happy New Year
- Originally from Vermont, I now live in North Carolina. My work can be found in recent issues of REAL: Regarding Arts and Letters, The Jabberwock Review, The Emerson Review, Storyglossia, The MacGuffin, Confrontation, Passages North, SmokeLong Quarterly, elimae, wigleaf, and Pank, among others, and forthcoming from Gargoyle #57 and REAL: Regarding Arts and Letters. One of my stories has been translated into Farsi by Asadollah Amraee, and many others by Jalil Jafari, two of which have been published in the Iranian journal, Golestaneh Magazine. For two years I worked as an assistant editor for Narrative Magazine. Currently, I serve as a mentor for Dzanc's Creative Writing Sessions. I'm working on two novels and a short story collection. In May, I was awarded the Carol Houck Smith Contributor Scholarship for the 2011 Bread Loaf Writers' Conference.