There have been hints in the air. It has been drab after rain storms but not terribly cold; there have been murmurings about punchkis and talk of Mardi Gras down in New Orleans. Perhaps it is the mention of Ash Wednesday later in the week and the coming Friday Fish Frys at the neighborhood churches. Every year I think the preparation for Easter begins almost before the Christmas decorations are down, but there is no way of slowing down the calendar pages, Lent is upon us.
In my head I see Diane and I at the Stations of the Cross at St. Monica’s every other Friday and hear the dirge like hymns. From the church we walk over to the school cafeteria to join the commotion of the Fish Fry. The aroma of frying fish, onions and cabbage noodles spills out into the schoolyard every time the door opens. Not only is the food good, but it is an occasion where I often see people I otherwise do not mill around with. There is Raymond, a fellow traveler from the trip to Ireland in 2011 and Lyn, who lives behind me but I never see outside anymore since his back has become the bane of his existence. There is Gina, a young lady also from the trip to Ireland, who made a point of catching me just before I went into the church last Saturday evening, just to say hello. The last time I saw her was in Marc’s near Christmas where she was shopping with her father.
Now half way through a 661 page science fantasy book that Toby at Ameriprise loaned me a couple of weeks ago, the story is beginning to feel very long. It is called The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss. This is his first novel and is book one of three. Toby and his best friend send each other books to read so that is how he ended up with this tome though he does not have an interest in this genre. He pulled it out of a cupboard when we got onto the topic of books and my eyebrows arched when I saw the blurb on the back cover by Terry Brooks who is a seasoned science fantasy writer.
After shooting a series of e-mails back and forth I found that none of my former Iowa Summer Writing Festival friends will be at the University this summer at all much less at the same time I am scheduled for. I’ll look forward to expanding my horizons by meeting new people as well as learning more about writing.