Six years ago, I took ten days off from the coffee shop café where I’d worked for three years to return to the Texas campground where my family had spent our summer vacations. It’d been close to forty years since I’d last been there. I figured it be familiar enough and yet also unnormal enough to allow me to deeply reflect and (of course) write.
I was coming up upon completing my sixth year of living in Salida. Back when I’d decided to move, I gave myself three years to begin “making it” as a writer. If it hadn’t happened, then I would move on to somewhere else, get a real job, and get on with my life, such as it was gonna be. But my ten months here wound up being getting myself established here. Writing took a far back seat. Therefore, I spotted myself an additional year to get my writing career up and running. Now, I was just a few months shy of having stayed on six years, with still nothing to show, really, writing-wise. Ergo, four full days at Cassels-Boykin Park, on the shore of Texas’ Lake Sam Rayburn, away from what was habitually familiar, in order to sort myself out according to that parental dictum: Remember who you are and where you come from. Essentially, to figure what to do with myself, writing-wise and Salida-wise.
But on the afternoon of my first full day there, I went into Zavalla for a mid-afternoon lunch at the local diner. I returned to my campsite to find my tent, and what’d been inside (sleeping bad and pad, just-bought books) had been stolen. So much for staying three more full days, getting my life sorted and settled. I spent another couple of nights at the college town hotel I’d left two nights before, and then returned home.
Last October, I visited Telluride and decided to return again, same time next year. But rather than staying just the usual two nights, I wanted to stay for eight, for seven full days; and for the same reason I’d planned those four days in Texas.
So here I am: my first full day of seven. We’ll find out together what I’ll allow to transpire.