July 3rd, 2007



Yesterday was prime. Thanks to the magic of Ambien, which doesn't work for everyone, but half a dose does us just fine, thank you, we slept like babies until the alarm went off at 9. Thanks to the foresight of Ellen, aka The Mighty Provider, we had lovely pots of goat yogurt and apple juice in the room refrigerator so we didn't have to go out in search of breakfast. We ate, we checked email, we dressed, we were downstairs in the Salon for our first interview at 10 am sharp.

First, I gotta tell you about the Salon. It's a large room with ceilings up to there, painted a deep acqua with gold accents. The furniture is large, florally (and floridly) carved gilded and upholstered in green cut velvet. It's the kind of stuff you tend to slide off if you don't sit very firmly. There are paintings, (in gold frames) mirrors, (ditto)--and two computers for the use of guests--not in gold frames, alas, but hidden behind curly Beaux-Arts dressing screens, which have enough gold in them to make up for it. Here we met Jose (I haven't figured out how to do accents yet, alas) Antonio, who is doing publicity for Bibliopolis, who is publishing The Fall of the Kings in Spainish. He is, as we say, a cupcake. Courtly, young, bright, passionate about good writing and politics and just about everything else we talked about. No ironic distance here. No "I'm too cool to care." Just