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The Second @ the Hotel Mission de Oro

On New Year’s Day I got an email saying a poem I’d recently written would be up on HipMama Zine. Yay! I’ve been working on longer term projects all year so I’ve published a good deal less and nearly neglected my blog altogether. But The Husband follows my blog (has been since before he became The Husband) and suggested that I might consider going back to it more often and work on blog posts or poems I wasn’t going to put other places. Like a zine without the folding and the papercuts. So in that spirit, I give you my second day of 2020.

After a long day of driving I ended up here: https://www.hotelmissiondeoro.com/

Often when I drive from LA back to Plumas County I can’t make it in one go anymore. So I wind up stopping in Santa Nella. I never thought to even look at Hotel Mission de Oro as I assumed I was priced out, but hello Expedia and the fact that motels around there have uncomfortable beds and a price range that’s really only a $25 difference, I gave it a try.

LOVED IT.

It’s like hotels are supposed to be run. Also I have a thing for lamps.

I am a complete sucker for the whole tile thing. What’s more with the new house which hasn’t had an upgrade ever I am checking out everyone’s bathrooms all the time. #middleagednewlywed

So yeah, I liked the room.

I traveled with teenagers. I repeat TEENAGERS and as the mother of them –I knew immediately I needed to do two things this morning before heading back on the road for 5 hours.

  1. Get myself ready for the day and
  2. Get them awake. Tell them to be ready to leave by 9 am and threaten to leave them there if they didn’t.
  3. 3. Take myself to breakfast ALONE.

That’s the brioche French toast & coffee at The Kitchen. Unlike the free breakfasts at nearby motels. This set me back a few dollars but it was quiet and peaceful and I could wait for food without listening to Fox News (no TV in this dining room).

I even got the chance to write:

It started my year off right , I think.

I will definitely be back. Because all of us agreed they were the best beds on the road.

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Calling on all California State Politicians to Respond

“Nüremberg Principal IV states that “The fact that a person acted pursuant to order of his Government or of a superior does not relieve him from responsibility under international law, provided a moral choice was in fact possible to him”

We are in a moral crisis and none of us should be sleeping at night. California, I have given up on the other 49. I have always felt more allegiance to state than country. To the geography of the West–the open air beyond the great divide.

I heard about the border and I wanted to run down there despite the idiocy and spectacle and unwise planning a lone American latina on the border trying to rush facilities incarcerating babies and children would be. I didn’t know what I’d do when I got there. I’m a mother. I wanted to pull children on my lap and give them hugs and feed them and tell them it’ll be okay.

But it’s not going to be –childhood trauma runs deep. Whatever happens those kids will never forget. Best case scenario is children reunited with their parents will forever jump and panic the moment they are out of sight–to the bathroom, to another bed to sleep.

I can just manage feeding myself and my own kids. I feel helpless and as an article in Slate mentioned, slightly numb. Somewhere I’m convinced a meeting took place where Trump and his cabinet of evil decided to just inundate the good people of this land with stuff daily to break us down.

We will all go off social media for self-care and then they’ll sneak up on us and make life worse for everyone.

I digress but I used to think of Republicans as the nation’s grandfathers with a well-balanced if heartless check book.  We came up with ideas. They’d tell us no. Relent slightly. And sometimes one of those white supremacist roaches would crawl out of a crack in the foundation and we’d slap it with a newspaper and throw the whole thing away. Republicans had a roach problem but they weren’t themselves roaches.

I can’t even wrap my head anymore around dissecting this on a tray and finding out where it all went wrong. I only have a world where breastfeeding children are ripped from their mother’s bodies by the same people who want to force poor American women to have babies whether they want them or not. We live in a world now where the worst of everything is possible and no one acknowledges their own ironies.

Like a mass of evangelicals standing behind heartbreak and destruction with smiling happy wal mart faces.

I retreat to California. My state that stands in defiance to the Trump Administration. My  state’s politicians take this further. Each and every one of us needs to stand up. You need to stand up. Sign on. There is no sleeping for this state is a sanctuary for no one now.

Let’s go to the border of our great state together. Let’s demand to see the children. Let’s demand they are released to their parents immediately. Let’s verify they are safely together. Let’s welcome these families and feed them. Dear god, we owe them now at least that much.

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literary

Rabble Lit & Happy May Day

When I first heard of the concept of this journal I was all in immediately. It’s something my work has always had to struggle with. Where do you fit as a literary writer when you’re kind of punk ass at the same time? Can you be academic when you’re throwing out references to children’s literature? Can benign neglect be a motif?

I do a good deal of writing about children in one way or another–maybe because I identify with being misunderstood and grossly misinterpreted and of all creatures on the planet, I think they own this more than anyone else. We are shaped by what we are born into –setting, family, etc. I happen to be born working class and I see no reason to shed that skin.

Rabble Lit acknowledges that and that American stories do not always have to be men contemplating their navels on the subway of an Eastern city with a paid off student loan or none at all. Thank you for providing space, Rabble Lit and its wonderful set of editors.

This short story of mine is up there now on their launch day–May 1st. Happy May Day! I’m humming the Internationale.

In a Far Away Land/ Margaret Elysia Garcia

 

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AudioBook coming soon…

First of all for the library project followers. Things are looking up! School starts in two weeks and while we aren’t where I’d like to be yet we will be open in some semblance while we let the district comes to terms with itself.  We are forging ahead.

MEANWHILE BACK ON PLANET CREATIVITY….

I’m kind of excited about other things. My little quiet horror short story collection Mary of the Chance Encounters was scheduled to be published in June 2016–but the tiny publisher started being a horror story instead of publishing one,  so we mutually dissolved our project which left me free to strike out on my own (still looking for print publisher for that one). In the mean time  I’d done some work with Heidi Moore at Wretched Productions –a small indie film based in Northern California. In fact one of the films I’ve worked on with Heidi is coming out any day now.: Dolly Deadly

She was in between projects and had some time and Im a wanna be actress sometimes performance artist so……

8 of the stories from Mary of the Chance Encounters (arguably the weirdest , quiet horror ones) will see the light of day as a cool little audiobook cd this September! Also I love the cover art—taken by Los Angeles artist Ross Amador in November of last year. Who wants a copy? Pre-sale begins soon.

What’s it about? Ghost stories and other stranger creatures of quiet horror take place in and around Whittier, CA (my homelandia).

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See? I’m not all doom and gloom. The Library will open. The audiobook WILL come out. Hopefully we find for the print or ebook collection soon.

Also I’m happy to say that all the bureaucracy is becoming great fodder for a new Sad Girl zine. Haven’t written one in a year. It’s time.

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Just. Two. Bookstores.

So at the request of many a person writing to us (THANK YOU), I set up an Amazon Wish List. But I met today with Dawn Gray at Books & Beyond in Chester, CA. Chester is about 20 -30 minutes away from Greenville, CA just beyond Lake Almanor. It’s the last town before you turn left onto highway 36 and begin the climb to Mt. Lassen Volcanic National Park some 45 minutes away (yes, I know I’m a southern Californian at heart and express every distance in minutes).

Books & Beyond is where I do the bulk of my book buying when I’m in Plumas County.

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Dawn said she was happy to be THE local bookstore for the Library Project. For locals and others wanting to support a local bookstore rather than the Amazon giant, you can call up the store or visit and order books from her. She’s giving a 20% discount on books for the Library Project.

Their information is below. Dawn is pretty hip to the YA scene and can give great recommendations. She often helps me out with such things. (I like to think I help her out with memoir and poetry).

Here’s their website:

Support local independent booksellers!

Thanks, Dawn!

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A Trip to Carmel Valley, Part 1

Ever not realize until perhaps almost too late that you need to get away?  That’s kind of where I was earlier this month. I needed to go somewhere and not think about long term projects looming over my head. So I headed to Carmel Valley for the first time in at least 16 years. My mother and step father were stationed in Ft. Ord in the late 1980s. And then my mother lived in Salinas for 17 years. So I’m quite familiar (or was) and have quite a few memories of the area.

So…it was a beautiful few days….and while there were a few places long gone that I missed (the paper store in Carmel-by-the-Sea was the first place I ever bought blank books back when I was 16), I embraced the new and the newly rediscovered.

My companions and I had a lovely time exploring Holman Ranch. How could we not? Beautiful weather, beautiful walking.

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And wine tasting. Oh my goodness. Is there anything better than drinking wine in the middle of a week day afternoon? The height of decadence really. Here’s Nick at Holman Ranch offering up some of their finest.

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Here we are in the Holman Ranch wine cave. We did eventually leave the cave but I was happy there. Taking notes on which ones we liked so we could hit the tasting room on Carmel Valley Road on the way out.

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Apparently the state’s oldest swimming pool. Six feet in the shallow end. I liked to think about how Charlie Chaplin used to hang here frequently.

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And then I fell in love with the Hacienda on the premises and just wanted to stay forever and re-read A Hundred Years of Solitude in a corner with wine. Perhaps some coffee and chocolate. No wait. Mole. On everything. I’m a sucker for inner courtyards.

IMG_20160516_173033floorozHow could you not want to go beyond the door?

and yes, I know I’m not Catholic anymore. (Catholic free? Well one is never really Catholic free) but the hacienda at Holman’s Ranch was exquisitely beautiful and peaceful.

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…and more wine. It’s estate wine  you know—grapes used are strictly just what grows on the property itself.

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At long last we settled into our rooms. And yes. I have a thing for tile. Can I live in the shower, please?

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Holman Ranch just had an amazing relaxing effect on me. I savored and enjoyed every minute of it.  I loved knowing that silent film stars used to roam about the grounds. As anyone who knows me knows—I’m all about the silent film era–well vintage everything really. Part of me just wants fashion to end at about 1964. Glad I also was able to break out the new bathing suit, retro in itself , to hang out at the Holman Ranch.

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It goes without saying that I want to come back. Holman Ranch guest cabins and rooms are available through either joining their wine club or by hosting and attending a private or corporate event. So please. Someone have something there again soon and invite me. Just deliciously relaxing.

Do I have to come home?

#LLBlogNotaConf