Jessie: In New Hampshire enjoying some of life’s simple pleasures.
This week wraps up our series of Wednesdays on the unexpected and I wanted to leave it on a particularly high note. So, Wickeds, what is an unexpected pleasure you have discovered in your life? If there is more than one I’d love to hear about them all!
Julie: I find that as I get older I don’t judge myself as much as I did when I was younger. I still enjoy challenging myself through art, for instance. But I’m also, somewhat unexpectedly, a huge Marvel movie fan. In fact, I have them going in the background when I write. I’m not sure why that works for me, but it does.
Liz: When I was younger I never understood the value of being still. I always thought things like yoga and meditation were not for me – that I didn’t have the mental ability to do them. But during some particularly rough times, those things because my lifelines. I meditate every day. I’ve also noticed such a difference not being able to go to an in-person yoga class the past few months and I can’t wait to go back.
Edith: Not self-judging is so important, Julie. As is meditating, Liz. As for me, when I started writing the Quaker Midwife Mysteries, I was surprised by how much I loved (and still do) the historical research. Examining old maps, looking up how people dressed, checking the history of words to see if they were in use at the time, discovering old letters and diaries, and so much more. Right now I – a person who rarely reads non-fiction – am reading The Remedy: Robert Koch, Arthur Conan Doyle, and the Quest to Cure Tuberculosis by Thomas Goetz. Yes, it’s research for a book, and it’s fascinating. Go figure!
Barb: Edith, I love narrative non-fiction and try to pick subjects for my books I want to learn more about. I’ve had some tremendous reads while researching the Maine Clambake mysteries. My unexpected pleasure is my grandchildren. Everyone wants to be a grandparent, right? And I did in an abstract sort of way in that I wanted my children to be happy, and if that happiness included children I wanted that for them. But I was unprepared for the full-on, fast-motion falling in love that flooded me the first time I held each of them in my arms. Just like with my own children. (Which I was also unprepared for.) It has stayed right along for seven years now.
Sherry: I always loved being around large groups of people and being on the go. I still enjoy both of those things, but I also love small groups of two or three. Also the value of staying home — a good thing I learned that one, right?
Jessie: I think you found out just in time, Sherry! I love everyone’s answers to this question! I love learning new things about each of you! I think an unexpected pleasure for me has been the addition of a dog to my life. To be honest, throughout my life I have had a ferocious dog allergy and also a few terrifying and injurious incidents involving dogs that belonged to other families. But in September of 2018, I ended up with a puppy in a roundabout and unexpected way. In a stunning turn of events, Sampson, the poodle, has added so much pleasure to my days. As my children are leaving the nest, he is providing such a lovely, childlike energy and a level of faithful companionship that I did not realize I would value. He helps to give structure to my schedule and aids and abets me in reaching my 10,000 steps each day. All in all, he had been a hypoallergenic miracle for which I am humbly grateful!