There are many joys in writing these essays.
The first is simply the act of writing. Nothing orders my life better than sitting down at the keyboard and making sense out of some recent experience. Writing enlivens my little gray cells -- as Hercule Poroit might say.
My enjoyment of the writing process was not a surprise when I started this blogging process nine years ago. After all, I have been writing tales since I was four, but seldom anything that grisly.
What I did not anticipate was how many people I would come to know through these occasional musings. Even before I left Salem on my move south, I knew several fellow writers as well as I knew some of my neighbors.
What has surprised me is the number of people I have met on side roads. Several months ago, I received an email from Richard Lapidus.
We had never met, but he wanted to know if I would allow him to use one of my photographs in a book he is publishing. The photograph was of a motel sign in Gila Bend, where my brother and I stayed on one of our trips to or from Mexico.
I gladly agreed. In fact, I was complimented he asked.
In turn, he sent me a copy of another of his books -- Snake Hunting on the Devil's Highway. It turns out Richard is a snake hunter. And that is exactly what the book is about. Hunting snakes in Arizona.
Now, just by chance, it turns out I have a great fondness for snakes. I have for all of my life. When I moved to Mexico, I had dreams of seeing a new snake every day. As it turned out, I have seen only about three in my eight years of living here.
When I finish the book, it will go in the library. I know one reader who would really appreciate it -- my niece. She not only loves snakes, she collects them as pets. And her favorites are those with nasty dispositions. She takes it as a personal challenge to train them.
Who knows who I will meet next out here on the internet? Maybe an opera buff who wants to use my shot of La Scala for a poster. Or a dog lover who needs some sentimental photographs of Barco.
There is always potential in the cul-de-sacs of life.