Bucket List Book Tour

By Anita Garner

I’m in the book tour thinking stage, which happens before book tour planning, which happens before publication, which happens next year.  Of course I’ll go to the Deep South first – my stories move from the South to Southern California. Then an East Coast swing and other places to combine book talks with friend and family visits.

Then I must take The Glory Road to England.  I’ve never been.  I try not to be jealous of colleagues who work there, with their Abbey Road recording sessions, but I am.

What if there’s a combination bucket list trip/book tour? If that could happen, I’d stay a few weeks, rent a place near London transportation. Something cozy. A comfy bed and a small kitchen, a coffee maker for me and a window to watch tea drinkers go by.

One really should share high tea at Claridges or the Dorchester, business-related, of course, with much talk of books and such.  Then on to seek inspiration at places I’ve had crushes on for ages, places that have more to do with shows I watch and books I read.

Notting Hill, because it’s  photogenic and of course Hugh Grant’s in the movie. If I go into that famous bookstore of his I’ll say it’s work-related.

Holland Park, Jean Hardcastle’s home from As Time Goes By

Cornwall. Port Isaac.  Doc Martin would never forgive me if I didn’t stop in the village.

Lake District.  The scenery.

Then there’s Highclere castle.  Downton and all.

And two very Austen-centric stops, Chawton House, the manor where Jane’s brother, Edward, lived, and Jane Austen House, where she sat by her own  window to write.

 

 

Friends have moved to Ireland, Scotland, Wales and surely I should stop and say hello. Back in London, I’ll need to check on performing friends In the theatre district.

If time permits, perhaps watch Nigella Lawson tape one of her cooking shows or maybe Mary Berry will show me how to make a proper trifle.

My Mother’s people, the  Salisburys, were from England.  Daddy’s people were from Wales.  And getting back to book business, I’m in touch with UK fans of the music my parents recorded, rockabilly mixed with gospel mixed with country and blues and I hope to meet some of those fans.

Everyone says of course you must scoot over to Paris because it’s so close.  Work, work, work.

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TV Shows That Feel Like Home

Ever take a walk at dusk and look into lighted windows?   From the outside looking in, things seem warm and cozy. That’s the feeling I look for in a favorite TV show.  Not a particular house, but that feeling.  My favorite shows all have that in common.  

Favorite shows from the past took place (present-tense on many of these because they’re available on dvd anytime we want to re-watch) within a set that became as familiar as my house. Those of us who watched The Waltons every week feel we know every nook and cranny of that two-story farmhouse  – and the outbuildings as well.

Little House had not only the iconic cabin, but an entire town built from the minutiae in Laura Ingalls Wilder’s books and the imagination of Michael Landon and his co-creators.

A favorite Britcom, As Time Goes By, features a flat in London that feels like a place where I can stop by for tea and gossip. 

Food Network shows take us into some of our favorite kitchens.  True, many are sets built to simulate a home environment, but some actually take place in the homes of the cooks – Nigella Lawson in one of her London kitchens, Paula Deen in her home in Savannah, and Jamie Oliver from his country farm.

On Friends, the apartment is crucial to the show.   Ditto Sex And The City. Which fan of Frasier hasn’t memorized the placement of each and every furnishing and accessory?

But home isn’t only a place.  It’s also a feeling.  Mash  took place in wartime Korea in unfamiliar settings, yet because of the characters’ need to rely on each other, somehow it felt like an odd out-of-time-and-space home every week.

More than one show that generates warmth and a home-style feel took place in a bar.  Cheers comes to mind, but  there have been many others.

I’m looking for some new favorites, shows that feel like home because the characters seem to belong there – or belong to each other.  Any suggestions?

Ó Anita Garner 2008