Monday, January 24, 2011

A Face Worse than Death

Yippee! My contributor's copy of Probing Uranus arrived today. My story is "A Face Worse than Death", about half way through the book.

I'll let you know when it's on sale.

(And I'm back at work on the e-book.)

Saturday, January 22, 2011

A bit too interesting

I haven't got much writing done in the last few days.

On Thursday I got my hair done, and a new photo taken for the website. It was overdue, but it meant that I didn't get any writing done in the morning. Then in the afternoon I got gastroenteritis. So no writing then either, and not much sleep that night.

By morning I wasn't ill any more, but I was very tired. I opened one eye and asked, "Can you get yourselves off to school and work without me? Good." And I went back to sleep.

I got out of bed at about 11, and managed some breakfast. I'd just logged on to check my email when the phone went.

My son needed me to collect him from school. He sneaked up behind a friend, and flipped the friend's hood over his face. The friend span around and shoved my son violently into a concrete column, knocking him dizzy.

To be fair, he apologized profusely afterwards.

So I had to get dressed and take my very shaken son to the doctor. It took most of the morning to establish that no, he didn't have concussion and no, his arm wasn't broken. Whew!

And I collapsed into bed for the afternoon - so no writing done on Friday either.

On Saturday I was supposed to be tour guiding at the Roque. It was icy overnight, so I got a phone call saying we might have to cancel, then one saying they couldn't cancel and be careful. So I left early, in case I had to drive the last bit at 10 km/h.

Once above the tree-line I slowed down, and kept a wary eye on the shadows, where ice might be lurking.

And pretty soon I had to stop, because a bus had gone into a slide and was now stuck, and blocking the road.

Well this was great. I couldn't get past the bus to the Roque, and I couldn't phone them, because that bit of the road had no mobile coverage. All I could do was to stick around, and explain the situation to any of my clients who came up that way. I couldn't do spit about the ones coming up the other side.

So that's what I did. And then I went home. By which time I was too tired to write.

Oh well, tomorrow is another day.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Dieting jokes

I just got a delayed birthday present or a tea towel, with jokes about slimming, a card with a joke about slimming, and a post card with a joke about slimming.

Do you think this says something about me or her?

Actually, the answer is, "both." And I enjoyed the giggle.

Friday, January 14, 2011


This morning I awarded myself a trip out to the ethnographic museum in Los Llanos, just for a change. It was fun. They had a temporary exhibit of stateus inspired by prehispanic rock carvings and statues, and I was touched to find they'd included one of me doing yoga.

Saturday, January 08, 2011

The Joys of Travel

Here I am, throroughly enjoying my short break on El Hierro. Meanwhile, my suitcase is enjoying a short break on Tenerife.

No, it's not the airline's fault. By the time I knew I could definitely book a flight, all the planes were booked solid. (I think this is from people going back to Tenerife in time for the new school term which starts on Monday). So I came on the ferry.

There´s no direct ferry on a Friday, but the Benchigua Express goes from La Palma to La Gomera to Tenerife to La Gomera to El Hierro. It´s a very fast boat, but the full trip takes five hours, and I get sea-sick. So I got off the boat in La Gomera and got back on again 90 minutes later, after a walk, and a writing session with the laptop and another travel-sickness pill. I told several crew members I was doing this, and nobody seemed to think I'd have a problem. Although, to be fair, I never mentioned that I was leaving the suitcase on the boat. Same boat, right? What could go wrong?

I got a bit of a bad feeling when I saw the luggage van drive off the ferry at El Hierro. It looked a bit different.

It was different van. Since Tenerife is the main stop, with far more passengers, they have two vans. That way they can fill one with luggage from Tenerife before the boat gets in, and just drive it on. Meanwhile, the van from La Palma drives off the boat, and stays on Tenerife, so that people can still collect their suitcases after the boat's left.

Only mine didn't get collected, because I was happily wandering around San Sebastian de La Gomera.

Well, the free luggage service is "At your own risk", (and I'd have had the exact same problem if I''d paid for a locker) but the staff were very helpful. My suitcase is almost certainly still on Tenerife, but they could put it on the next ferry for me.

The next ferry arrives 70 minutes after my flight leaves.

Yes they can, and will, send the suitcase to La Palma for me. I will get it back. They took my details, although I haven't heard anything because mobile coverage at my friend's house is very poor.

It could have been a whole lot worse. I kept my camera gear and the laptop with me, to use on the way (and I got a fair bit of writing done). My friend is supplying me with toiletries. Really, it was just a question of buying a new toothbrush and some emergency underwear.

But I really hope I do get that suitcase back. It's got some presents for my friend, which I'll post, and a one-of-a-kind jumper which took me ages to knit.

Thursday, January 06, 2011

Sneaking off.

Today is the last day of Christmas in Spain. Tomorrow I ought to start a grand session of housework: taking down decorations, tidying up and cleaning everything.

Sounds boring, doesn't it?

So I'm sneaking off to El Hierro instead.

Of course the housework (and the guilt) will be waiting for me when I get back, but it'll be worth it. Besides, last time I snuck off like this, I got a lot of writing done.

Saturday, January 01, 2011

Happy new year

Happy new year to both my readers.

We had a fairly quiet family party for new year's eve. I was very disorganised, and kept sending my son out to the shops for things I'd forgotten, so the leg of lamb went into the oven late, and we ate late, but it tasted pretty good when we finally got around to it.

And the fireworks at midnight were amazing. We could even see flashes on the neighbouring islands of Tenerife and La Gomera.

So now it's time to make plans for 2011. I hope it brings all my readers whatever they most wish for.