22 November 2011

Three short words...

Last year on this day my world spun on its axes with the sudden death of Henry. Inevitably people kept asking me how I was in the months thereafter and each time I felt tongue tied. How do you describe the void left by him or the constant screaming of one’s soul? As the sky poured snow I barely had any interest in reading yet in December I did read a duology by Joey W Hill and in Mirror Of My Soul I read a paragraph where recognition of the emotions portrayed struck me with a powerful blow. This author managed to capture exactly how I felt:

Joey W Hill's Mirror Of My Soul: “Tell me what you want.” His mouth whispered it, those lips close to hers. Her own parted, letting out a breath that was a near sob. “I want to be whole. Feel it just once more.” She raised her palms before her face. “I remember lying there with David beneath feeling his heart stop beating. I tried to cup his head in my hands and it was wet…so soft. Softer than a baby’s skull. “And there were these people around. Staring at us. But I felt so alone, because David was gone. His heart was no longer my heart, his voice in my head was gone. And they didn’t know me, didn’t know us. And I wondered, ‘Will anyone ever share my soul again? Get inside me and know my thoughts?’ No. Surely not. And yet, I didn’t die. That’s the most intolerable cruelty, that you can realize that truth and not die.”

I realized I could emotionally bleed from a fatal wound but still live to see the days turn in to weeks and then in to months. A year has already gone by now. The first time I laughed I cried two seconds later. The first time I saw the make, model and color of our car drive by my heart skipped a beat in joy that Henry was coming home early. Only to realize seconds later he wasn’t. Music by Queen, Gary Moore, U2 and others made me see him so clearly yet is was a picture from my heart. I took a fantastic trip. Met new people. Experienced all these new fantastic things but when I arrived home all I wanted was to share it with Henry…and all I could do was stare at his empty place on the couch. If one man was challenging me to accept the new direction our life was heading, it was him. I’ve got a new job and loving it…just like he said I would. Only coming home and not sharing my day with him or enjoying a night out, social obligations or just a lazy weekend together is something that is hard for me to deal with. It all boils down to three short words that encompass so much;

I miss him!

In the good and the bad. In all the ordinary and extraordinary ways.

Today I will crack up the volume and listen to some of Henry's favorite music – including the man he thought had a talent not from this world to play the guitar; Gary Moore.

PS:I also wanted to thank everyone who send me their hugs & love via whatever digi way they chose! I can't express how much it means to me (((huggles))) back.

02 November 2011

Column - XL edition: What am I up to & GayRomLit part 2

Do you guys still remember me?? About two weeks ago I promised you another NOLA vacation update but I’m a working girl now and free time has suddenly become a rare commodity. If I’m at home I want to vege out in front of TV or just read a book. I’ve got four reviews in first draft mode:

* Lena Diaz - He Kills Me, He Kills Me Not   2 stars
* Carol Lynne - All Play No Work (Cattle Valley series bk 1)   2 stars
* L.A Witt - Out of Focus   3.5 stars
* Belinda McBride's - Uncommon Whore  3.5 stars

Full reviews to come one of these days!!

Then the cover discovery folder is getting larger by the day:


*focus Leontine, for the love of the gods, FOCUS!!!*

Right, I also have blog related e-mails to answer *eek* but for some reason the time and energy to post/reply e-mails is only in my mind but doesn't translate in to action *sad face* I forgot how much energy it takes to take on a group of 20 or so kids. They all have Sinterklaas (Dutch version of Santa Claus) in their vision and it is accompanied with a frantic energy of; What will I find in Sinterklaas’ bag?? By the time I get home after bicycling for 35 minutes I’m exhausted. Can I have a vacay already ;)

Anyhoo…I can’t deny you some more of NOLA so here goes:

At Mr.B’s Janna and I ate their signature dish of BBQ shrimp. I have always said; NO Shrimp for me!!! But I was in NOLA and I was in a culinary adventurous mood, so what can one do but eat some local food ;) The crabcake was simply divine and in combination with the sauce I wanted much more of the stuff than was on the plate.

Then the waitress tied a large bib around our neck so our upper clothes were covered. I had no idea why until the dish was presented to us and Janna boldly tried to peal the first shrimp. Oh yeah, splatter of BBQ sauce for one please! It was hilarious to see but then I had to go in. I held my shrimp between index finger and thumb in a *iiieeeeuuuwwww this is sooooo gross* kinda way. The waitress saw my face and quickly made way to our table asking if she could help. I told her I was a shrimp peeling virgin and she directed me through my first one. Was it painful? No, but it was a very weird experience with all the twisting of limps, peeling of skin and pulling of heads. After 10+ minutes or so various fleshy, white shrimps lay there in the BBQ sauce and the tasting could commence. It was delish, my taste buds were on fire due to the hot flavors of the BBQ sauce but in combination with the shrimp I ate them all! *go me* As a dessert I took brownies with ice cream and was stuffed!

After this sumptuous dinner Janna and I had our first encounter with Bourbon Street. Well, I can tell you all your senses will be engaged. Sight, smell, hearing – there is lots of half nekkid females trying to lure me into various establishments. To my utter frustration there wasn’t much mancandy to be found so I took a picture of what I did find – see the result here:

When I spotted a bright red two-seater I thought; “Who the hell would park a car like that in the middle of party central?” Well, I guess when you’re the devil peeps will steer away from your car. Did I however? No of course not! I had to go wicked and pretend to get into the car. I’m just glad the devil had just the same wicked sense of humor or else I would be partying in purgatory right now ;)

To me my trip to NOLA existed out of inhaling food, culture, history and partying like its 1999! The twelve days flew by and while the GayRomLit was fun I think my next convention will be something like the RT. One of the things I loved most was meeting fellow readers but also some of my favorite authors – here’s a collection of pictures from the GRL:

Sandwiched in between Rowan Speedwell (left) and J.P. Barnaby (right) *cheesy grin*

From left to right: Tracy - Janna - Heidi Cullinan and me at the lobby of the hotel.

from left to right: Janna - Damon Suede and me at a spotlight of some sort.

Picture taken by Kassa.

Picture taken by Kassa.

At the farewell brunch of GRL, standing from left to right: Rachel Haimowitz - Tracy and me. Sitting left is Kassa and right is Janna.

At the lobby of the hotel I practically attacked these authors because I had to have a picture of them and me. From left to right is Clare London whom I can't wait to meet in England again, she is an absolute hoot to be with!! And her accent - I'm guessing she owns wicked and naughtiness LOL Then we have Marie Sexton - she can visit me day or night - love that woman!! Then you have me with a face splitting grin. And then you have Kate McMurray, she is such a sweetie and i still feel like a social Neanderthal for missing my author lunch with her. However, as Janna and I traveled back, Janna let me read over her shoulder with Blind Items. Kate McMurray made me giggle, which only happens on rare ocassion! So yeah, I had to buy Blind items!!

Just talking about this vacation wants me to go back!!! But alas, no free time for me. I just started working 20-30 hours at a kiddie daycare. Between that and my social agenda I suddenly don't have all that much time left. So the sundays become my holy reading grail and downtime.

Have I missed anything in the mean time??

PS: You can click on the pictures for an much larger version. I've got no idea why the hell anyone want a larger version but hey, I thought I should mention that piece of info anyhow ;)