Sunday, January 1, 2012

. . . And Back Home Again

On Saturday, the third day of my lightning four-day trip, I drove up to Magnolia for some necessary chores. I got a lot done in just three hours or so, and managed to squeeze in time (at Janice's suggestion) to stop by the Magnolia Bake Shop on my way into town (right on the west side of the courthouse square with all its big old magnolia trees) and picked up some of the little tart-sized pecan pies they make so well -- the best pecan pies in the world, so far as my experience goes.

It was kind of strange visiting my home town and not seeing anyone I know (or, so far as I know, being seen by anyone who knows me). I did manage two brief stops by the yard, where I picked a few pansies from among the ones I'd planted during my last visit back in October, but didn't see any of the cats. I also stopped on my way out of town to go by the cemetery and visit my father's and grandmother's graves: the flowers still looked good.

Then it was back to Shreveport for one last evening, for more on the ongoing family crisis (which we need not go into here). I was glad to see two of my nieces, two of my great-nephews, and my youngest niece's soon to be fiance (which I suppose will make him my nephew in law). I also had the rare chance for a long talk with my sister, which I enjoyed but which kept us both up too late. During which time, a lot of fireworks began to go off. Without my really noticing it, New Year's had come.

Sunday it was time for one more quick family visit, then the long drive (non-stop) to Dallas. I'd allowed an extra hour and a half in case of slow-downs or mishaps or delays on the road, but I was in luck, which meant I was able to get together with fellow Tolkienist Jason Fisher for Second Breakfast at a place near Love Field, The Mecca. We had a little over an hour to talk about current projects, past projects, abandoned projects, other people's projects, &c., and of course the movie.

Then it was on to rental car return (which went smoothly), check=in and security (likewise), filling the thermos with Starbucks tea, and seeing if the airport had wi-fi (they did, but only the arm-&-a-leg kind, so I passed). Reading some on the Pyramids book* and, when I needed a break, starting in on LAMENT OF THE FLAME PRINCESS, filled up the time till my flight and also during the flight itself to Albuquerque. In my three hour layover there, I started re-watching the first of the Peter Jackson LotR film, which carried me through all the long flight to Seattle.

And now, reunited with Janice.


--John R.


*I'd had the rare experience the day before of a waitress (at Cracker Barrel in Shreveport) admiring the book and writing down its title and author to be able to find a copy of her own later.

1 comment:

Jason Fisher said...

It was great to see you and catch up. In spite of the central location of Dallas, not very many Tolkien colleagues seem to pass through, even on layovers. Either that, or they are passing through and just aren't calling me! :) Once in a while, Janet Brennan Croft drives down from Oklahoma City to visit the ginormous IKEA north of Dallas, and we've gotten together for lunch. Other passers-through, don't forget I'm out here. I'd love to see any of you.