Monday, July 22, 2013

Memories, Good Times, and Your Monday Fortune Cookie 7/22/13

It takes more than a good memory to have good memories.

SNARKY RESPONSE: Too much wine doesn't help either. Then again, it might.

It takes more than a good memory to have good memories.

I've just shared two marvelous weekends with two wonderful writing groups at The Porches in Norwood, VA. As expected, we all dedicated ourselves to writing, editing, and revising our current Works In Progress. Sitting in our rooms or on the famous porches, we typed, scribbled, and pondered. Chapters were written, sections were chopped, and ideas were explored. The glorious quiet was filled with insect and birdsong, the tranquil scenery offered respite when screens grew fuzzy, plots twisted into knots, or ideas seemed to slow. The sense of a shared mission helped keep us all focused and creative. However, writers cannot live on ideas alone. Oh No! All that creativity deserves to be richly rewarded and there was no shortage of delectable rewards to be had.

When evening began it's gentle approach and shadows lengthened, we set aside our works and gathered for dinner and socializing. Not that there weren't brief breaks throughout the day, breakfast, lunch, snacks, but the key word is "brief." The end of the day signalled a shift from isolated creativity to mixing and mingling food, drink, and talk.

The Tea & Strumpets ladies, Sofie Couch and Elvy Howard delighted our tastebuds with Lasagna and Grilled Chicken & Shrimp, respectively.
Even a confirmed veggie-phobe like myself could find nothing to fault in Sofie's lasagna even if it did have spinach in it. No, honestly, I eat the occasional green, and the spinach in the lasagna added color and flavor. Elvy's grilled offerings added zest and the opportunity to eat with my fingers (my favorite utensil, when applicable).

Evening meals flowed into evening drinks. In perfect Tea & Strumpets form, Alexa Day brought a mixed case of wine to be sampled and enjoyed. Sadly, the Strumpets were unable to account for more than six or seven bottles, but it was not for lack of trying. Our efforts were accompanied by the most outrageous and captivating light shows provided by lightning bugs. Of course, discussion of the whys and wherefors of lightning bug displays dissolved into laughing lewdity and speculation. Being Strumpets, would you expect anything less?

The James River Writers dinner cooks, Mike & Shawna Christos and Leila Gaskins provided even more tummy tickling delights with Grilled Chicken and salad and Individual Pizzas with a myriad of fixin's to spread on home-made pizze crusts, respectively.

And to accompany it all were copious amounts of libations ranging from cold, clear artesian well water provided free by The Porches to a seemingly unending array of wine.

The James River Writers showed a comparable level of skill and enthusiasm in the arena of  alcoholic consumption plus nearly polishing off a bottle of whisky which I believe went by a delightful moniker of Larceny (or something - perhaps someone will correct me in the comments). Ah, proof positive that a good memory does not require total recall.

As you can tell, a fabulous time was had by all and we left with words written, ideas hatched, memories made, and connections more perfectly forged. I highly recommend The Porches Writers Retreat for anyone wishing to escape the daily distractions. You can attend solo or in a group, both will provide you results far beyond your expectations.

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