Sunday, September 24, 2006

A fine day for a book reading......

We drove to Blue Rapids, Kansas in bright sunshine. The weather was near-perfect with a brisk breeze and temps in the low sixties. Whatever route you choose in that kind of weather provides pleasant natural vistas. Colorful scatterings of yellow and white daisies, goldenrod, and buttercups grow wild along the highways. Sleek cattle and horses graze on native grasses or drink belly-deep in farm ponds. Hardwood trees, just starting to turn fall colors, mark indelibly riparian causeways. Every so often a farmstead looms, nestled safely into vales between plateaus and rolling hills. As always, I imagine what this land must have been when native tribes were the sole human inhabitants. By the time we reached Blue Rapids, my mind and spirit were energized and ready for the afternoon event.

Shoppers browsed Mercantile treasures and a fascinating array of Kansas-made products as we breezed through the door. I joked that my "groupies" would be arriving soon. Owner Lori Parker set out tasty snickerdoodles, confetti cookies, and raspberry tea as treats. She also treated us to a sample of scrumptious Scuppernong Cider, made and bottled in Blue Rapids. This did not taste like any cider commonly known, but more like fruit juice of an indescribably delicious flavor. The legion of my faithful groupies arrived. With everyone sated by cookies, tea, and cider, the reading began. Tom Parker introduced me with a flourish and I was off and running.

Tom had insisted I lay out all my books, but My Name is Esther Clara was to be the main focus. I read a passage about the hapless rooster who got drunk on fermenting wine bubbling through the bunghole, followed by one that showed Grandma's strong opinions about politics and politicians, women's liberation, and setting priorities. I was center stage from one to two thirty and most of that time was spent answering questions or telling literary war stories. The audience was appreciative, but keep in mind that they were groupies -- friends, family, and loyal fans. I'm not certain what the response might be in an audience of strangers.

Before heading home I bought a bottle of Scuppernong cider. Can't wait to introduce my husband to it. Next time, I'm checking out the ear candles more closely and buying jelly. Maybe, if I'm lucky the Mercantile will have be back for another performance.


Anonymous said...

That's so cool. I'm jealous.

I'm no good at the public stuff, and I avoid it. I'm glad hear you did well, groupies or not.

Don Yockey said...

Happy to know you had a great day in BR !
Still wish I could have attended...If your book/books are as good as you words in this place, I know I will enjoy them.
Must get busy & fetch your latest, I assume they are available at the Mercantile?
Best Wishes...DY

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I enjoy good writing by writers and poets who are not famous. My mother said I was born a hundred years too late. The older I get, the more I realize how right she was.

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