Welcome to my world. I blog from New Hampshire's seacoast region, with original photos, poems, fiction, and ruminations reflecting my life here and my native Midwest, all the way to the Pacific Northwest, mainly. Some would say I'm a retired hippie or a veteran journalist, but I'd argue there's much more. I love traditional Greek and New England contradances and singing in the Boston Revels' community choir, for instance. You're quite welcome to place your hand in mine or add to the harmony!
In my new novel, What’s Left, her maternal grandparents are both dead before her birth – they’re victims of a late-night collision on a rural highway. But they cast a big influence over her life, all the same.
Stavros and Bella are second-generation Americans, bridging hard work and success to establish the family restaurant, Carmichael’s, as the campus landmark it becomes.
A crucial moment in my new novel, What’s Left, occurs when her uncle Dimitri tries to convince her father-to-be to quit his career and move in with them, without actually offering him an income or much else.
As I noted in an earlier draft: Manoula remembers all of this clearly. Says her brother’s chuckle perplexed Baba. Here’s her ensemble extending some kind of ambiguous invitation, on the one hand, and simultaneously affronting his professional portfolio, on the other.
Unlike Cassia’s Baba, I’ve tended to make big moves like this more deliberately. Even so, some of my moves, in retrospect, still amaze me. Relocating with all of our goods in a U-Haul without an apartment awaiting us halfway across the continent was one of them.
But throw the promise of hot love into the mix? Now it gets interesting!
Tell us some decision you’ve made that might seem irrational to those around you. How did it turn out? Would you do it again, given the chance?
In the family, Cassia may have had food like this.
In my new novel, What’s Left, her aunt Nita embodies a rare quality I’ve come to appreciate. She’s someone who seems to know everyone. She takes an interest in their lives and families. Remembers details. Asks questions. Suggests social connections, job opportunities, resources.
She’s also someone people trust. You can confide in her, find consolation, comfort, compassion.
In the bigger picture, she’s a kind of person who makes community function. I can make a list of people I’ve known who do that.
In my new novel, What’s Left, the family’s nest egg was built by living on one income – in a single household – while everyone worked at the restaurant. The surplus went into savings and investments. Once the kids come along, their earnings also go in the pooled income, to be drawn out for college or marriage. Over time, as the family grows, the house has parents, grandparents, kids, aunts, uncles, and cousins. What a circus!
As for pocket money? Take it from the till? Some places, yes. And some places, no.
They’re about to start over, in a way, when Cassia’s father-to-be shows up.