Adventures in Walking. Stuff and Things. Plus, My Tour Schedule

I signed lots of books for lots of people in a very short time on Thursday, and a number of souls, probably noticing the mania in my eyes, kindly expressed concern for my health. On the off chance that any of those same people later saw me being wheeled through the Houston airport, please allow me to reassure you that I did not fall into a faint from too much signing or anything like that. No, what I did was, I stepped creatively off of a curb. In the horrible moment after it happened, a moment during which I replayed the dreadful snapping noise over and over in my mind and discovered that I truly could not stand, I feared that I’d broken my ankle (which it turns out I hadn’t), and all I could think was that my book tour started in 12 days. My book tour started in 12 days, and I had to go and miss the curb and do something SO FREAKING STUPID. It’s not like I was rushing headlong down a hill while attached to a spastic dog. It’s not like I was jumping off a boat onto a dock in high heels on New Year’s Eve. (Those are two of the other times I’ve sprained an ankle. Actually, both of those were also pretty stupid.) No, I was walking. Just walking! How do we live in these perilous bodies?

Anyway. A minute or so later, I found I was able to stand, and also hobble. Hobbling is underrated. It’s effective, if slow. Slowness is also underrated. These past few days, people have been zipping past me. Zip zip! I hope they’re watching out for curbs.

As of now, we intend the tour to continue as planned, because 12 days is LOADS of time, right? I’ve been having an interesting dialogue with my own denial. When my doctor wrote me a script for crutches, I was like, Crutches?! HA HA HAR-DE-HAR! I’m certain I don’t need crutches! The reason I’m certain is that a person starting a book tour in 12 days would never be on crutches!  But it turns out that the crutches are a big help. They mean that I can take tiny little forays out into the spring weather without setting back my recovery. Though I will say that crutches are not the magical mobility device I once thought they were. Why did anyone think it was a good idea for someone who is already injured to take up the activity of swinging around unsteadily on two sticks? Isn’t that a bit risky? Better suited for able-bodied people?

One thing I was sad to miss on account of my injury was Lesley Kinzel‘s event at my local indie, Harvard Book Store, for her new book, Two Whole Cakes: How to Stop Dieting and Learn to Love Your Body. I haven’t had a chance to read this book yet, but people whose opinions I trust have read it, and say it’s wonderful, wonderful, wonderful.

One thing I did manage to do, with the help of a crutch (for short distances, one crutch strikes me as being much less hazardous than two crutches), was go to the Cambridge Winter Farmers Market, which is in its last couple weeks. Local people, check out this market some Saturday, if you have a chance. If you miss this season, make a note of it for next. Many wonderful local vendors. My two personal favorites are Shady Oaks Organics fresh mushrooms and the ravioli and pasta at Valicenti Organico.

Since I’m on my couch a lot, I’m watching a lot of TV. You would think, with the recent glut of Dickens adaptations on PBS, I’d be sick to death of it, but I really really love the most recent version of Great Expectations. It’s been ages since I read the book, so I can’t remember how faithful this version would be to the book, but I think it hangs together well, and there are some lovely characterizations. I particularly appreciate the scenes between Pip (played by Douglas Booth) and Magwitch (played by Ray Winstone), and every time Joe Gargery (Shaun Dooley) and/or Estella Havisham Junior ^_^ (Vanessa Kirby) are onscreen. This is the first time I’ve ever connected to Estella as a character. Oh, and Herbert Pocket (Harry Lloyd)! ♥ And wow, the design and the photography! Warning that the creepy parts of this production are EXTREMELY creepy. Miss Havisham (Gillian Anderson) and her house made my skin crawl, and there were times when I couldn’t even look at Orlick (Jack Roth) straight on.

Finally, at long last — here is my tour schedule:

Tuesday, May 1, 6 pm
Cambridge Public Library with
Porter Square Books
Lecture Hall
449 Broadway
Cambridge, MA 02138

Wednesday, May 2, 7 pm
Oblong Books and Music
6422 Montgomery Street (Rt. 9)
Rhinebeck, NY 12572

Thursday, May 3, 7 pm
Children’s Book World
17 Haverford Station Road
Haverford, PA 19041

Friday, May 4. 4:30 pm
Bethesda Library with
Politics and Prose
7400 Arlington Road
Bethesda, Maryland 20814

Saturday, May 5, 2 pm (PLEASE NOTE THE TIME CHANGE)
Anderson’s Bookshop
123 West Jefferson
Naperville, IL 60540

Sunday, May 6, 3:30 PM
The Red Balloon
891 Grand Avenue
Saint Paul, MN 55105
Monday, May 7, 7 pm
Hennepin County Library
Ridgedale Branch with
The Red Balloon
12601 Ridgedale Dr.
Minnetonka, MN  55305

Wednesday, May 9, 7 pm
University Temple
United Methodist Church
with the University Book Store
1415 NE 43rd St
Seattle, WA 98105

Thursday, May 10, 7 pm
Copperfield’s Books
138 N. Main Street
Sebastapol, CA 95472

Thursday, May 31, 7 pm
Harvard Book Store
1256 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138