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Friday, July 6, 2018

Belfast, by the Bay

This is Belfast tonight. It’s the town in midcoast Maine where Dan’s four brothers--John, Mike, Dave and Pat--live. Today started out rainy but then cleared by afternoon to a freshly dipped, sunny blue sky with cool breeze. Dan and I both had writing deadlines and that was hard. I worked from about 11 to 6:15 at a table in the Belfast Co-op, taking breaks to get iced coffee, local grass-fed burger w blue cheese, avocado and hot sauce [yum], a big bottle of cold Maine water and, at neighboring Chase’s, a wedge of nice Parmigiano-Reggiano to bring home to NJ. Punch was with us part of the time while we tried to work. She was at loose ends, of course. I sent her walking up the hill to the historic Post Office to mail a postcard. I made her do at least one page of her summer homework packet. I got her a sandwich. I tried to get her together w the four sweet girls we met yesterday. [The oldest sister, Luna, was shepherding the younger ones and they took Punch to the candy store. I would have paid Luna for a couple hours today but she was busy.] Dan left after a couple hours w Punch and they went to John’s house to watch a movie, then John took Punch out a bit. At 6:30, we met Mike for a walk on the lovely Rail Trail, which he was instrumental in developing. Then Dan, Punch, Mike and I went to Nautilus for dinner, right on the water. I had the Lazy Lobster, nearly caviar-priced but good. Punch ended her meal with strawberry 🍓 shortcake. It was so beastly hot last night that the fan barely helped. I tossed and turned till nearly 1:30 a.m. I had wanted to rise at 6:30 and write but could not without sufficient sleep. I am proud that I powered through one story and sent it to my editor. But she expected all four. I worked to get my ducks in a row. Still, I had to sit with the knowledge that I had let my editor down. It was a bad, sad feeling. But rather than let it leave me inert, or drive me to the chocolate rack or cookie shelves, I said a prayer that I could change. That I could do good work. Be more organized. Do the next right thing. I wrote the story about a little cabin in the Norwegian forest. I chose vivid words that told the tale in an inviting way, and was grateful for that skill, and the speed to write coherently and weave sentences together. I am going to sleep. A beautiful breeze, music to my ears, tonic to my soul. My mother-in-law coming by about 9:30 a.m. so I better sleep so I can get up and shower ahead of the curve. Good night, sea coast. Good night, friends. We head home Sunday. Xo

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