Many years ago when I was traveling semi-regularly between DC and Charlottesville I’d drive past a huge junkyard barely hidden from the highway by a long fence – chain link with strips of green plastic woven through it. I probably would have forgotten about it except for the sign:
LEON’S AUTO BODY PARTS — THE WALKING MAN’S FRIEND
Gotta love Leon.
Next week I’m checking into the high-tech medical version of Leon’s – my local hospital – and having both my knees replaced with new parts. I guess my surgeon is the NON-walking person’s friend. I hope so, at least.
I’m psyched, nervous and eagerly looking down the road several months to the return of warm weather and some real walking.
I obviously haven’t been blogging much and my timeline for the JUST DESSERTS: Greed. Lust. Death. Tiramisu. sequel went off the rails with all this body parts stuff. I apologize for leaving Vince, Lizzie, Ernestine and the rest of the Moon Beach crew in the lurch, but they are still alive and kicking and the rest of their story will emerge before too long, I promise. Right now, Vince and Lizzie are having an – uh – adventure in a junkyard somewhere in the rust belt and I suspect Leon was the inspiration for that.
Cathryn Grant wrote a blog post about crows that reminded me of a creepy guy from my distant past. Pretty soon a story idea featuring Creepy Guy and his pet crow started percolating in my head. I can already feel the story expanding to embrace Smoker Man, a creepy guy from the present.
Smoker Man parks his silver sports car in the same spot at the state park marina every day. He leaves his window open about three inches with his cigarette hand dangling out, pulling it back in to inhale every 30 seconds. Sometimes he’ll get out and walk along the shoreline in a dark grey sweatshirt, hood always up. Top’s always up on the car, too, even when it’s nice out. He lights his next cigarette from the last. His eyes are definitely focused Somewhere Else. He’s the only person I’ve seen walking along the beach that I’ve been afraid to talk to, and you know I’ve met some characters.
I’m wondering what impact a couple of days of post-surgery narcotic buzz will have on the story of Creepy Guy and Smoker Man. I’m anxious to see how that will play out. More giant chickens, perhaps?
So I’m gonna be in the hospital and then rehab for a bit. I’ve packed Swamplandia, Death Comes to Pemberley and Boomerang in my suitcase and loaded my laptop with a bunch of books by indie authors. I bought ugly purple gym shorts for physical therapy and an awesome Dragon Lady shirt to scare away evil spirits. And, of course, I packed notebooks and pens for capturing whatever my Muse has to say.
I think I’m set for this new adventure. Catch y’all soon. In the meantime, enjoy this:
Still image: think4photop / FreeDigitalPhotos.net