Well, I lied when I said there would be just one more post. There will be a couple, it seems.
My dad came to visit immediately upon Liz’s departure, and we have continued the projects that Liz started/helped conceive. We put my mattress up on a platform of plywood and milk crates. We repaired the screen door. We’ve been documenting a few maintenance requests. And walking the neighborhood, and exploring the town (a local Italian place turned out excellent! craft beer here is more expensive than I’ve seen it, ever!), and exploring a little further away as well. We spent a day in the mountains and today we’ll spend another. I’ve had a few more bike rides with new friends! It’s all very exciting.
Pops & Hops at Spruce Knob
Gose flight (purchased at a bottle shop in Pittsburgh, except one brought from Texas)
Ron Hinkle glass purchases
campus at night
with Pops at Seneca Rocks
Ron Hinkle blowing glass
at a park in Pittsburgh, between airport runs
Hops at Big Timber on his birthday!
country roads by bike
first bike ride from my front door
We also celebrated Hops’s 11th birthday at a brewery after a good day of hikes – he napped well.
I am still touristing, a little, in my new town. As soon as Pops flies out, though, it’s back to work: I’ll have less than a week til orientation starts at the new job, and my syllabi need work. Busy busy…
Well, friends, we’re nearing the final hours of Foxy livin’. I’ll try and review a few things for you here, but it’s busy times (when I’m within cell range in these lovely mountains).
Since I last wrote to you, I headed into the town of Elkins for a day and a night, to see some friends and do some conferencing about my upcoming new JOB (eek). From there, we drove up to Spruce Knob, the highest point in the state of West Virginia.
Spruce Knob Lake
Spruce Knob Lake
at the observation tower
highest dog in West Virginia
highest van in West Virginia
but where are the plateaus that are allowed to just be plateaus?
We had a couple of nice nights of camping, with weather cool enough that we had a fire one night, and hiked a bit up in the hills.
everything we need
I’ve been reading & writing furiously, and doing some planning for the move coming up, and a couple of visitors right out of the gate. I know I keep using this word, bittersweet, but truly… I’m excited for all the change, and I’m going to miss this here.
I am feeling very much at home in West Virginia – and also feeling how far I have to come before I can claim a home here, too, because I respect people’s earning of their homelands. But I have high hopes for this place. I love the people whom I know here.
I visited with my friends Doug and Melissa at their home. Hops got to know their Italian greyhound, Geno – Hops’s curmudgeonliness in full effect, but they did soften up at the very end there.
It is such a treat to be with Doug, always. He was one of my earliest, best friends in this state, and I’m so excited that we’ll soon be neighbors (more or less). He’s also my official teaching mentor for the coming year. I’m a lucky woman, again.
One of my nights in town, I attended a fundraising event for the Nikki Giovanni Scholarship at the Hindman Settlement School. We enjoyed readings by Doug Van Gundy, Ann Pancake, Crystal Good, Glenn Taylor, Bill King, and Jowhor Ile, and music by the duo Born Old (which is my buddy Doug again with his friend Paul). I also got to see Vince Trimboli, whose new book The Book of Rabbits is fresh out, and I can’t wait to get my hands on it!
Finally, on my way out of town, I stopped to look at a home I hope to rent, very near the campus of West Virginia Wesleyan College where I’ll be teaching. Fingers crossed!
Somehow I did all of this with no pictures for you. Sorry! More to come as I head north to Pittsburgh. Pictures, promise.