Breathing in and out

Following a tour, I set aside days to breathe in, and breathe out.

I tidy and scrub, I unpack my suitcase and shove it into the back of the closet, I wander out to the deck with a cup of coffee and reflect that I really should do something about the weeds.  I go to a movie with the family.  Maybe even two movies.

I do not write.  I do not open the folder with the printout of the next book, although I may touch it as I unearth my writing space from its heap of accumulated debris.  I do not hold editorial conversations with my editor.  I do not pass GO.  And I do not collect my $200.

I have been home for five days now.  My suitcase is mostly empty, although not yet back in the closet.  The various objects I promised to mail are in a neat stack on the pool table/work surface.  I am down to my last half-dozen unanswered emails, my last two inches of unread Time and Newsweek magazines, my last four days of unread newspapers.

Today I will finish the emails, carry the various packages out to the car for mailing, empty the suitcase, and shove it into its space in the closet.  Then I will make myself a cup of tea, climb the stairs to my study, sit down, and pick up a pencil, to open the folder with the 340 existing pages of The Green Man.


  1. Jessica on May 28, 2009 at 10:57 am

    Everyone needs a vacation, and you’ve gone through more than most in the last few months. Take time and reflect and relax, and we’ll all be waiting for The Green Man whenever you get back to it.

    The 15 Weeks of Bees was great fun, although I didn’t win anything in it (despite my best Twittering efforts!). It was nice to be remember how I felt when I read BEEK all those years ago, at the ripe old age of 17, and how things have changed – for me and Russell – since then.

    Thanks a million for 15 years of great enjoyment.

  2. Annika on May 29, 2009 at 5:37 am

    Thank God it’s not just me who leaves the suitcase for several days to be unpacked while I decompress from my travels. I like that you take your own good time to sort things out when you get back home. So much of my time I’ve spent my precious energy rushing about when I return that I exhaust myself and am good for nothing for a week. You are an exemplar!

  3. Gail on May 29, 2009 at 9:39 am

    We fans are glad you get out among us, but the schedule you have on a tour is brutal. I’m also glad you have taken some time for yourself to breathe – and unpack which frankly doesn’t seem at all the same thing. I really like the idea of having a Mrs. Hudson who does the unpacking for me – but like you I am the Mrs. Hudson. I send you greetings from the Harvard Coop Bookstore – had to speak to them to get something straightened out – the young woman I spoke to asked all about your event and how it went and told me how thrilled (that was the word they used) that they were able to get you to come. You are in demand!

  4. Meredith Taylor on June 6, 2009 at 10:24 pm

    Whew. So glad you have had some unwinding time. I recently went off to a Sherlockian scion society meeting, of which I am now a member. (Les Klinger made me do it; or at least I can allege same.) Lo and behold, a nice lady held up LANG and our fearless leader Jerry (aka Tin Box) gave a nice pitch about how good it is. He said another Russell was coming soon and I had the pleasure of visibly startling at least the nice lady by saying “It’s done. Coming in about one year, The Green Man.” that was fun, now just have to keep rereading LANG… //best to all//Meredith

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