I just got home from 13 wonderful days of vacation, escaping the triple s that hit Texas and visiting 2 different friends in Idaho and Colorado. Both legs of trip went extremely well, with even my luggage making it to each stop. You know what I mean—the minute the horn blasts and the baggage carousel starts—and you get that sinking feeling as more and more bags come out and pass you by. You hope your suitcase made it your destination instead of heading off to Chicago or Atlanta.
About the only glitch in the entire trip was arriving back in Dallas a tad late. I made my way to baggage claim, and our flight’s luggage didn’t come and didn’t come. After a long wait, they announced one number to head toward and then another before telling us there was a jam, so head back to the original carousel instead, where 3 other flights had luggage being dumped out. As more and more suitcases came out, I got that sick feeling. Then the P.A. said the jam had been cleared—and Flight 144’s bags might be coming out either here or at the original carousel. It was a little frustrating for me (and terrible hot as my husband waited for me in the cell phone parking lot, awaiting my call as he sweated in the heat). But all is well, and I’m back at home.
I’m fortunate that I have friends who have moved to such incredibly beautiful places and were eager for me to come and visit them. In Idaho, we did lots of hiking at places such as Priest Lake and around Sandpoint, both around Lake Pend Oreille and at a nearby national park.
Lots of hiking happened in Colorado, too, along places such as Horsetooth Rock Trail and Devil’s Backbone. Again, the beauty of nature surrounded me everywhere we went.
I’m glad we hiked so much because in-between? It was all about the food & drink! On the Idaho portion, I had everything from maple walnut ice cream in Canada to huckleberry cheesecake.
Colorado proved just as tempting, with my favorite being white chocolate bread pudding made with croissants. That dessert was worth the trip alone!
Of course, even breakfast was a sweet deal, as you can see in this pancake flight
Tons of little breweries dotted Ft. Collins, and I got to visit Budweiser and take the tour. I’m always fascinated with the process of things and how they are made. That dates back to the 1st tour I took as a 7-year-old Bluebird, where we went through a plant that made melamine plates and cups—and even got a free plate at the end of the tour! I will definitely have to return here because the Clydesdales were on tour in California, so all I saw was the meadow where they gallop and their stalls where they sleep.
I also sampled hard cider for the 1st time. They have flights of these, so you can sample and then read about what you’ve tasted. Many were tasty, and I loved the flavors that came out (such as apples, pears, cinnamon, ginger, and nutmeg).
I’m happy, though, to finally be home again. My 1st full day back was yesterday, and I did laundry and shopped for groceries. I made my family shrimp enchiladas, and everyone seemed appreciative. I reactivated my library hold list, so I hope I won’t check today and find I have 10 books that have come in at the same time!
Of course, I also have a lot of TV to catch up on. Suits finished up their season while I was gone. I need to see what Ray Donovan and Sookie Stackhouse have been up to. And I have my fingers crossed that the detectives from Murder in the First have finally nailed that weasel Eric Blunt (Kudos to Tom Felton for making the transition from child actor to adult one. He’s been terrific in this role).
And what was probably the best thing of the 1st day back? Hearing from my editor Debby Gilbert. She’s published 4 of my historical romances, with another medieval set to come out in December and a western next March. Just before I’d left on my trip, I’d sent her a different kind of manuscript—my 1st romantic suspense. She emailed me yesterday and told me how she kept saying to herself, “Wow, this is SO good,” as she read it. It’s nice to know I stepped out of my comfort zone, and it paid off. I’m very happy that she bought this new effort.
So here I am, Texas. My trip has recharged my writing batteries. Ready to get back up on that horse and ride hard and fast and see where my next manuscript takes me!