There are a lot of things to talk about with Kate. Summer things. Adventures, dresses, food. Small towns and getaways and soul searching and what to do with this one life, and of course boys and pie. But my favorite thing to talk about with her is probably writing. It's not the easiest topic to get started on, such an amorphous yet unwieldy thing. We manage though. There are nuts and bolts there, her blog and our blog. Conversations that have come up about what our writing processes reveal about our thought processes. Things like that. We get into it, and when we do, it's good.
Last night at Hazlewood, I was telling her that I haven't posted here in ages - "What are you talking about? You just posted last week!" she said. But of course, as I told her, the standard is something else for me, I want it daily, I want to keep track and record and remember. When I told her that I wrote on the blog every day when I was at the ranch, she said "Wow. What did you write about?" and truth be told, that's the exact same question I've been asking myself lately.
What is there to say, really? So many stories just don't go here - like mistakes made that hurt people, or moments of risk or vulnerability that belong to someone I love rather than to me. Those things occupy my mind a lot, how we sort through those things, or don't. I wait for a phone call, or try to make an apology, or struggle with the way something I've said has been misinterpreted, taken the wrong way, bristled at. At work, too, nearly everything belongs behind closed doors, is proprietary or confidential or personal. Those are the kinds of pursuits I'm involved in.
I think what made the daily writing at the ranch possible was that it was just me. It was all blue skies, and books, and knitting and the dogs, whose every last secret I could tell. Back here, everything is more tangled and gritty. There are disappointments, expectations. There are things to long for and things that need to get done. At the ranch, it's just the day. The long day, punctuated by a few small tasks - carrying water for the horses, feeding the dogs, myself, going to sleep late or not.
Still, as much as I struggle with how to say any of what my mind lingers on these days, there's always a way. A way into the conversation with Kate about writing, a way to sit down and actually do it. Get something out, lines on the screen, questions about things, a warm-up. A start.