DEAR FRIENDS, 4/16/2012

Another strange week. I am, every week, made aware of how difficult it is to put together any sustained writing time to work on anything. It’s nearly impossible. Life keeps intervening, like for example this week.

Monday, was the funeral for our neighbor and friend Eva Colegrove who died at the age of 96. She and her husband, Frank, were, if not the models for “Raymond and Ann” in JUDEVINE, then at least the inspiration. They were the ultimate hill farm couple. And after the funeral, we went to the party at Jim Ryan’s place. Jim, and his partner Katie, have taken over Frank and Eva’s farm and turned it into a new-age, organic farm, with two green houses, organic fruits and vegetables, beef and so on. We are delighted that they are just a little over half-mile down the road.

After a morning of chores in Morrisville on Tuesday, I got a good afternoon’s work in on SAMOVAR AND ZEEMAHOLLAH.

And Wednesday began the same way. I thought I was on a roll, until my friend, the painter, Altoon Sultan emailed to ask me if I’d introduce her at The Vermont Statehouse in June when she gets this year’s Outstanding Achievement in the Arts Award from the Vermont Arts Council. I readily agreed to do the job; I like Altoon and her work very much. I spent the rest of the morning taking notes for my introduction. I did get back however to SAMOVAR AND ZEEMAHOOLAH in the afternoon.

After recovering from a dentist appointment on Thursday morning, I began Thursday afternoon my preparations for my reading at the Holderness School in Holderness, New Hampshire, Friday evening.

I spent Friday morning continuing to rehearse and prepare for Friday night and then in the afternoon traveling to Holderness where I read to a very large and enthusiastic audience that evening.

Saturday I was on the road early and home by noon. Saturday night was our daughter’s 35th birthday party. My wife and I cooked an Indian meal for Nadine, Mia–her partner–and 8 of their friends.

And suddenly it’s Sunday and the week is over. Today is for clean-up from the party, recovery and hopefully getting outside to spade up my biggest raised bed where I will plant my first crop of spinach and two kinds of peas.

Looking back on the week I see that I had exactly one and one-half days out of seven to work on SAMOVAR AND ZEEMAHOOLAH. As I said at the beginning, it is incredibly difficult to put together any sustained writing time to work on anything. The moral of the story is: if you are going to work in a sustained way, you have to abjure the rest of your life, and, I would add, who wants to do that?

Well, there’s always hope for next week.

Sincerely, David Budbill