Still Expecting Delays
Almost exactly a year ago, I received word that both the paperback and e-book versions of my book Dancing in the Fountain would soon be posted on Amazon – which nowadays marks the official debut of your book. Finger poised to click “send” on my breathless email announcement, I waited. The paperback soon appeared, but there was no sign of the Kindle edition. A week later, I was still waiting, and I beginning to get concerned – and perhaps just a teeny tiny bit cranky – about the delay.
Meanwhile, life – as is so often the case – continued on, with Rich leaving for a family gathering in New Jersey, and the downstairs lavatory malfunctioning in an unspeakably foul and dramatic manner. As I paid the plumber $300 for the 15 minutes he’d spent clearing out the pipes, I remember thinking, “If only my publishing problems could be resolved as quickly and easily as my plumbing problems.”
How prophetic I was!
The following day, the lavatory staged an even more ghastly eruption, and for the next week my time was divided between calling the formatting/distribution house that had apparently routed my Kindle edition to a black hole, and dealing with the plumber, who kept upping the cost estimates at dizzying speed. He showed me blurry videos of our pipes’ interior, which looked remarkably like images from my last colonoscopy. I could just about make out some fuzzy gray blobs, but whether they were tree roots, polyps, or planetary nebulae I couldn’t tell you. “I’ll email you copies,” said the plumber helpfully. Really? What did he think I was going to do? Post them on Facebook?
In the meantime, friends who saw that the paperback edition of Dancing in the Fountain had appeared on Amazon emailed their congratulations. “This must be one of the happiest weeks of your life,” they wrote. Not so much as you’d think.
Not the same facility Rich used. Photo by G Paumier
Eventually, of course, the Kindle edition of my book did surface, and the plumbers finished clearing the blockages in our pipes and departed. Our sewage, and our lives, flowed on.
This summer, hiccups and obstructions have once again disrupted our plans, causing an all-too-familiar feeling of frustration we're calling “delay-jà-vu.” As I mentioned in my post Plan B, our long-anticipated train trip through Central and Eastern Europe, originally scheduled to start June 1, was delayed for a family wedding and then put off again so Rich could deal with a pesky pain in his leg. He’s much better now, thanks to acupuncture and an esoteric form of muscle-manipulating chiropractic treatments. This being California, the real surprise was that no one suggested shamanic drumming and/or medical marijuana, although my yoga teacher felt a wheat-free diet might have done the trick sooner.
In theory, by the time you read this, we’ll be in the air en route from California to London to Seville. A few days after that, we should be on a train to Barcelona, then taking a ferry to Genoa to begin our wanderings. By now, however, I’ve learned my lesson about plans and schedules. I don’t know what’s going to happen – a rail strike, worldwide monetary collapse, or simply an asteroid striking the earth and sending us hurtling toward the sun – but I can tell you one thing for sure: I’m still expecting delays.
7/29/2013 10:22:00 am
Have a wonderful trip you two! Loving your website and looking forward to reading all about Eastern Europe!
8/1/2013 12:13:32 am
Thanks, David! I'll keep you posted on our adventures, including whatever clever new delays fate dreams up for us!
7/29/2013 10:23:36 am
Safe travels to you both! Looking forward to hearing of your adventure! We love Eastern Europe.
8/1/2013 12:16:53 am
Thanks, Kay. We're getting the train tickets today; hard to believe after all the delays this trip is so close to happening.
7/29/2013 11:10:43 am
Love your clever take on everything. Pleasant paths!
8/1/2013 12:18:36 am
Thanks, Nancy. Just getting this far has been an adventure; can't wait to see what the actual trip is like.
7/29/2013 11:45:20 am
Karen, if you want to make God laugh, tell Him your future plans. I had this fantastic plan of racing an Ironman (which was yesterday, and took me a full year to train for it), and then taking off to Peru for 2 weeks. Three weeks ago I was diagnosed with pulmonary embolisms in both of my lungs and I couldn't race. Instead of being frustrated with "wasting" a year's worth of training, I'm just thinking about how blessed I was to have trained for Ironman leading up to this incident, because being in awesome cardiovascular shape saved my life...and heaven forbid I had an issue on top of Macchu Pichu!! Improvise, adapt, and overcome : )
8/1/2013 12:35:10 am
What a story, Kate! You are certainly blessed to have such a philosophical attitude about the dramatic shift in your plans. I hope your lungs are on the mend now. I agree, you were certainly lucky to discover your illness before the race and Macchu Pichu – as we were lucky that Rich's leg problem happened in California and not some remote corner of the world where we would have had far fewer resources for dealing with it. As you say, improvise, adapt, and overcome! And thanks for buying the six copies; I hope your friends enjoyed the book!
7/29/2013 11:57:55 am
Soooo looking forward to your blogs as you deal with everything that's thrown at you as you traverse this wonderful continent. You're both going to have a blast and we will be anxiously awaiting your posts.
8/1/2013 12:38:33 am
Thanks, Rena, it's great to know you're enjoying to stories. After so many delays, we're a little stunned to actually be back in Seville, heading to the train station to buy our tickets today. I almost hesitate to write those words, thinking that Fate is just going to chuckle and throw some other surprise our way. Whatever happens, I'll certainly keep you posted!
7/29/2013 01:38:31 pm
Thanks for making me smile.
7/30/2013 03:42:57 am
Good luck - I hope no more delays put the kybosh on your trip! Can't wait to read about it!
8/1/2013 12:43:41 am
Thanks, Fiona! It's great to be back in Seville for a few days, although walking off the plane at 9:00 last night to 40 degree temperatures was a bit stunning. I'd almost forgotten what Seville is like in full summer! In theory we're leaving in a few days ... but of course, at this point I take nothing for granted.
8/1/2013 12:39:45 am
Thanks, Deb. Glad to know you're enjoying the blog!
8/1/2013 04:13:32 pm
Just back from Nerja, Seville in October and retirement in two years! Loved your book and am inspired - thank you! Enjoy your trip!
8/2/2013 10:26:31 am
Nerja is such a great town; my Irish friend (the one called Molly in the book) is now spending half the year there and she loves it. It's a great place to retire, although for me, Seville is a more interesting place to live. Wherever you decide to retire, I hope you keep traveling and having adventures. Cheers!
8/3/2013 01:52:30 am
How exciting - a train journey around eastern Europe! Look forward to reading what you have to say about it, Karen.
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TO I'm an American travel writer based in Seville, Spain.
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