It's clear! It's nippy! We've got power! Yes, the hem of Hurricane Ike twitched across NW Arkansas late Saturday night like a drag queen in a snit, and we got trees down everywhere and no power from 3am to 8pm. Hard work for the road crews, and broken branches, leaves, acorns, and twigs all over everything.
Up at the Crescent Hotel, the lights were out all day, which meant a gorgeously spooky atmosphere for exploring this 1880s landmark. Lace curtains gusting out over dim empty corridors, doors opened onto empty rooms, their bedclothes still in a tangle, wide wooden staircases spiraling upwards...a perfect setting for Death at the Old Hotel. Even without power, a wedding went on as planned, and the big Crystal Dining Room seemed to be in full (if unlit) swing. I sat out on the wide back porch with a glass of OJ pilfered from the continental-breakfast spread and wrote letters as the pine and oak trees creaked in the wind and the sun broke through the scudding clouds.
Now, it's a beautiful fall day, crisp and blue and clear, with none of last week's soggy humidity. A day for hot apple cider and walking through the woods...which is just what's on my agenda once I finish up this week's CSA newsletter. And then, of course, more work on the next book, Breakfast at Steph's Cafe. Challah French toast and Dutch babies for all!