I'm shocked. The last blog posting was 1 year ago! Yesterday I turned 51 and haven't written here since my last birthday! Well, I can only say, that when there's no time to write, it's because life's just too exciting!
My 50th year was the best of my life so far. I bought a bike and trained all summer. I swam across the lake each day, sometimes the full there-and-back 1km swim. By August I was ready.. I did 2 triathlons! My first time ever, and aged 50! WOW. It was a little terrifying but the 2nd was much easier. This summer I'm planning to do 3.
I took ownership of my new Retreat Centre cottage in May. Then there were 4 moving days throughout the year, moving belongings to the new 'home' and clearing out the city house to make it into a 'hotel' style rental home. Lots of clearing. Not enough throwing out. Then I set up the new home away from home. We have settled in well now, and the 'cottage' is more of a home than the house in Toronto now!
By November my writing had taken off again, and after completing another novel (#23), I got organized and published my first book on Amazon.com in time for Christmas. "The Bird People: Children of the Dragon series" came out in time for Christmas. It's selling well, and the 2nd edition will be posted up this month.
Last week I posted up the 2nd book in the series "The Thinkers" -also in the Children of the Dragon series. It will be out on Amazon.com this month, and on Kindle next month. I'm also working on the 3rd book in the series, rough draft.
Last September I travelled to Europe to visit friends and attend a wedding in France. En route, I realized that I wasn't far off 50 countries. I was at 47. If I could visit 3 new countries on this trip, I could make it to 50 countries in 50 years! So I went to Prague on a 2 day all-night bus trip, and then on to France, and on the way to the wedding, I attempted to visit Jersey and Guernsey in one day. The ferry schedules would allow it, -5 minutes between boats- but the Jersey Government wouldn't!. I got to Jersey and they refused to let me take the journey, since they allotted 45 minutes for border control between islands! Poppycock I say!
And so, down at heel, I spent a very very boring day in Jersey, wishing intensely that I'd gone to Guernsey instead. In despair I entered a small spa to get my nails done for the wedding. The spa was a 'fish spa' -and for the sake of having a hilarious story to tell, I let 100 small turkish fish eat away at the dead skin on my feet for 15 minutes! The torture of tickling is unfathomable! -hilarious though.
The wedding of Michael and Natasha was the most stunning wedding I have ever attended. Such an amazing event, and everyone so happy. So much love between them both, too. I made new friends (Monika and Fergus) at dinner, and we've kept in touch as pen pals since the event.
The year of 50 rounded out nicely last week with a trip to Washington D.C. No, not a 50th country, but a nice little escape for Easter weekend. I can always attempt 60 countries in 60 years. Plenty of more deadlines to face in the decade ahead!
Happy Times to look forward to!
Hilary Slater: I write in the morning before I get out of bed. I write in the evening when the world is quiet. I write at Starbucks, where I can escape the household interruptions. But most of all I write in November, when NaNoWriMo inspires me!