June 22nd, 2011



This is it!  I'm 60 today.  10 years ago, Ellen and I rented a sheepfarm-turned arts colony-turned vacation rental in France--the Lot, a somewhat less-frequented but very beautiful department between Dordogne and Provence.  For three weeks, Ellen and I shared dinners in the barn, nights in the courtyard, and daytime excursions to caves and castles with a floating population of something like 40 guests (you know how we old folks are about remembering numbers :)).  It was magical, wonderful, memorable.

This year, Ellen and I are in a 1913 cottage on the campus of Hollins University.  She's Writer in Residence for the Children's Literature Graduate Program.  I'm on the faculty, teaching the Fantasy section in the creative writing division.  On Friday, we are giving the keynote speech at the Children's Literature Association Conference, which will be called something like "How Books Can Change Your Life," only jazzier.  It is very nearly as beautiful as Cubertou, the shower is a lot more appealing, and we know several people on the faculty and in town, and like them very well indeed.  Eating a celebratory ice cream sundae (mint chocolate chip and fudge, for the interested) at Pop's Ice Cream and Soda, we got in a conversation with a woman who is about to open a yarn shop, who also turns out to be a huge Bordertown fan. 

Magical.  Wonderful.  Memorable.

Wonder where we'll be for my 70th?