I’ve come now from Chicago (where I had a good time reading with Martin Seay and his lovely lady wife) to North Carolina — the sleepy/touristy burgh of Henderson, just outside of Ashville. The Ashville airport appears to be still under construction (lots of exposed plaster and backhoes) but the surrounding area is refreshingly nature-stuffed with misty mountains on the¬†periphery and fireflies rising at night from the darkening lawn to the trees. I’m here with Elisa’s family, to celebrate her mom’s 60th birthday, fresh from celebrating my own sister’s 30th in Chicago (which was also a real good time — Happy Birthday, Erin!)

(Beside me, on the rented countertop of this rented cabin in “Forrest Hills,” sits a jar-jar binks mousepad — it is hypnotic).

Whilst I explore Chimney Rock, etc, please check out this awesome audio post & plug of Under the Small Lights Jason Behrends put up on Chicago Now: http://www.chicagonow.com/blogs/chicago-subtext/ Jason was a gracious and generous host & MC for Martin, Kathy, & I the other night and I’m really happy to count him as a new friend.