WordPress has started #bloganuary, prompting writers with a different question daily, and reminds to tag the post Bloganuary in your tag section so it shows up in the reader with other Bloganuary posts. Also, don’t forget to share these posts on social media using the hashtag #Bloganuary.
Today’s a great day to blog, and the Bloganuary prompt is:
Promote your blog post on social media, using the hashtag #bloganuary.
What Does It Mean to Live Boldly?
I hopped on to this prompt because it felt appropriate as I’ve been struggling with my decision about going on my long awaited winter escape to Mexico. I’ve eagerly been awaiting this much needed escape, despite my being a Covid hermit for much of the last two years. I avidly follow news reports, Covid reports, country alerts etc. and even though my airline has canceled my flight a few times and my managing to book new flights, the apprehension looms with my anxiety of braving the elements while also hoping my new flight will remain.
I’ve spent a lot of time battling my two minds, or my mind and my heart, and after all I’m seeing and hearing with Covid reports, it appears as of now, Mexico is doing better than my own country! So I’ve decided, Covid here, Covid there, minus 20 here with grey skies and seclusion, sunshine and 88 degrees and several of my friends have already arrived there, what am I fussing about?
With all my weighing out, and despite my biggest fear of passing my Covid test to get back to Canada when the trip is done, I can mask up there as well as I mask up here. So yes, I’ve decided that I’m going to live boldly and go ahead with my travel plans. If I spent the rest of my life worrying about what could happen, I’d never do anything. This virus is heading into its third year. Nothing is going to change for a very long time as long as the world doesn’t reach herd immunity. It’s every man for himself to stay protected no matter where we go. If we wait to get back to living, when will that actually be? Years more, no doubt and more spikes and mutations to be had. Another day of living life is no guarantee. Every day is a gift. If we keep pushing off plans for living, who knows if we’ll be capable of traveling next year or the next year. Tomorrows are never guaranteed.
So yes, I’m going to live boldly instead of cowering behind my fears. I’m going to head for sun and sea with best efforts and begin to loosen the load of worry and act like the excited going away person that I should be savoring at this time instead of dreading. Ole!
*Don’t forget to sign up for the daily prompt if you feel like jumping into one for the month of January. If you missed or deleted the signup invite post from WordPress, you can sign up from the original post page.
It’s a new year and a clean slate, and hopes are high that this year will be the end of the Coronavirus as we know it. But the fact remains that we are globally, high in virus and numbers, due to the the recent appearance of Omicron. We can all hope that as this virus continues, it will tamper down, lose it’s hurricane strength, and hopefully, no new strains will mutate. And in the meantime, because the world is already in chaos trying to stamp out this virus, we’re about to have our first Mercury Retrograde of 2022. Crazy times 2.0. It begins January 13th, lasting until February 3rd. But these dates are not inclusive. Like a full moon, retrogrades begin their ‘retroshade’ effects within a week or two of its arrival date, and can linger just as long after completion. And I’m already experiencing the shakeup.
When Mercury retrogrades, it is said that this is because retrograde indicates the planet is moving backwards, when in actuality, a faster moving planet passes Mercury in its pause, leaving a feeling of going backwards. Mercury travels around the sun in 88 days and takes a retrograde 3-4 times a year. Since Mercury is the closest planet to the sun, its orbit is shorter than earth’s. It’s like Mercury has to slow down to let other planets catch up in-between its cycle around the earth. Things that occur during this period can make us feel exactly like things are moving backwards as Mercury pauses and other planets pass by. This first retrograde of the year will be in Aquarius. There will be four Mercury Retrogrades this year, all of them in air signs (yup, that’s me). Signs most influenced by these retrogrades are the people who have their sun or rising signs the same as the sign each retrograde falls into.
Mercury Retrograde Chart for 2022
January 14 – February 3 starts in air sign Aquarius, ends in earth-sign Capricorn
May 10 – June 2 starts in air sign Gemini, ends in earth-sign Taurus
September 9 – October 2 starts in air-sign Libra, ends in earth-sign Virgo December 29 – January 18 in earth-sign Capricorn December 29 – January 17 2023
Refresher Course: Mercury Retrograde
How does this affect our energy levels?
We can expect to have more or even less energy during this period, mostly of the nervous, unsettling or over-zealous type, causing possible bouts of anxiety. Each MR will fall in and affect particular signs more so than others.
What kinds of things are affected by a Mercury Retrograde?
Mercury rules our daily activities – technology, communications, contracts and relationships. When the planet is in retrograde we can expect glitches, delays and miscommunications in all of the above areas as Mercury is the ruler of communications. Extra vigilance should be paid to planned dates, appointments, signing contracts, editing, buying, selling, researching, negotiating, wills, documents, deeds, leases, and more. Most often affected are, computer issues, transportation and travel. It’s a period where we can expect the unexpected. In plain terms, when a planet is in retrograde, the planet takes a nap. And while it naps, it’s like it relinquishes its duties and the territory it usually stabilizes can run amok. This period is typically a good time to take a pause ourselves from big decision-making and a good time to reflect, journal, re-organize and re-evaluate our intentions, as well, it’s a good time to re-connect with people and/or projects from the past. As you may have noticed in the previous sentence, anything to do with ‘re’ as in redo, revisit, etc. is good to keep busy with during the MR period.
~ ~ ~
And here I am, in the thick of a Mercury Retrograde. As I pretty much, limped through 2021 with a sick husband and then his ultimate dying, which left me in numb and shock and grief, and my consequent going through everything we lived and shared together and two months later, moving, and of course, all of this while living in a secluded Covid world, all that has kept me going these past few months has been to get the hell out of Dodge and spend a few months out of the dread of another cold, sunless, lonely winter, and get to Mexico.
Am I concerned about traveling in a pandemic? You bet your bottom dollar I am. This is particularly the time where I’m getting excited to go away, but I’m not. I’m feeling a surge of anxiety while constantly weighing the pros and cons of my traveling. I know I’m triple vaxxed and extremely cautious around people, but I know many on vacation sometimes forget they’re still living in a pandemic, often forgeting masks and social distancing. I have a girlfriend down there since November who I keep in touch with to get the scoop on what’s going on down there. Mexico was actually doing not too bad before the rash of carefree Christmas vacationers visiting there helping spread the germs. And as much as I feel armed with safety supplies and three jabs, I’m concerned about if things get even worse instead of calming down after the holiday rush.
Air Canada has already changed my flight three times before it flat out canceled my flight last week (thanks so much Mercury). They took off their daily direct flights into Puerto Vallarta and made them all into connecting flights to gather more passengers, leaving only two direct flights at this time, weekly. After making two phone calls – each with its own four hour wait until a human picked up, I managed to get on a direct flight again, leaving three days earlier than my original flight date. I was confirmed on the phone I’m booked, but it’s been a week now and I still haven’t received written confirmation.
Besides the airline kerfuffle, this event also entailed my trying to get hold of my agent in Mexico to first find out if the unit I’m renting was vacant for my early arrival. Thankfully it is, but I’m quite unsettled that more cancellations are coming, and the prospect of what if things get worse and I get stuck in Mexico when I’m supposed to return? These are a lot of heavy concerns floating in my uncertain mind in the already shady period of Mercury Retrograde, leaving me with uncertainty of things to come.
On the pro side, I’m not sure I can endure another long, lonely winter without sun again. I thrive in sunshine, and there are only so many times and methods in my toolbox I have to remove myself internally from the darkness around me. It’s getting real old and I need to get out of here!!! So, oh yes, Mercury Retrograde is already alive and well in my travel plans, and no doubt there will be more to come before this period gets roaring and then comes to an end. So I’m caught in this net of wondering if I’ll get to Mexico, if I can stay Covid-free, and if I’ll be able to get back home. I feel almost guilty about getting excited to go and apprehensive about preparing and packing for this trip. My long awaited vacation is living in a big question mark at the moment. I feel like I should be preparing to go, but also must be prepared not to. Nothing like trying to sit down on both sides of the fence. In my heart, I’m going, but in my head I am ever so vigilant on keeping an alert to whatever this retrograde has in store for me. It’s all quite unsettling to say the least, and that is proof that Mercury Retrograde is already warming up.
I will keep you all posted on the status of my trip. In the meantime, be forewarned and prepared for the first Mercury Retrograde 2022!
Wow! It’s been so long since I posted a personal update here for you. I don’t know where the time has gotten to, but considering my last post a few weeks ago, talking about my brutal move and hearing Johnny Cash on the radio, and the post prior, talking about my moving in July and my BFF coming from the U.K., ya, well, that didn’t happen. But a few things have. And so I’ll fill you in.
My bestie from U.K. did not get here because our airports wouldn’t allow non-essential visitors without having to quarantine in a hotel at her own expense, for fourteen days. Heck, so many people can’t even afford to stay that long, so why would they want to spend it alone in quarantine? They only began allowing Canadian residents to come back home, in late June. And now it’s September 7th supposedly, where leisure air travelers will be welcome, as long as they’ve been double vaxxed and Covid tested prior to flight then no quarantine required.
Well this new time frame threw a wrench into my U.K. plans. And in the meantime, my friend Zan has sold her house again and will soon be moving to a rental home in a few weeks and she and her hubby will begin a new house project from scratch on the land they’ve purchased. So now, until she gets moved in and her and her hub take a private getaway for a week or so to Italy after their move, their first holiday since Covid struck, she will probably be here in late September. So it’s looking like some time in October I’ll be flying back with her to the U.K. It’s a tough wait, but probably better for time to pass as the summer crowds should be more tame, easier for traveling – maybe a jaunt to France, maybe to Italy, but definitely to Spain, and hopefully more time for the Covid to simmer down. Heck! I may even stay through Christmas, come back, and pack up for Mexico. All I know is I must get out of this constant space and spread my wings and breathe. I have no clue what I’m doing the rest of my life, but I sure as hell know I won’t find out by sitting on a couch with a computer. Nobody is going to come banging my door down with opportunity. I have to get back out into the world.
The last week of July, I took a little trip with my girlfriend Alison. We both needed to get out of our four walls, so we rented a hotel room up north here in cottage country for a few days. But, as it turned out, Zan’s sister lived twenty minutes from where we were staying and once Zan told her sister we were there, she swiftly invited us to stay with her instead. So, we stayed the one night at the hotel and off to Kokie’s beautiful home for almost a week! It was a slice of heaven to be in the fresh air and steal a few days at the beach when the usual rainy weather would let up. We had lots of fun yacking, Netflixing, walking, shopping vintage stores and playing Mexican Train Dominoes – a fun variation of Dominoes.
It was a lovely mini getaway and I look forward to Zan’s visit here so we can go back up to her sister’s house once she ever arrives here.
Coming back to my new abode felt a bit strange and back to reality. I am trying to establish somewhat of a new routine for myself without my husband and now, four months after his passing, everything still feels strange and out of sorts for me without a comforting familiarity.
And then something wonderful happened in the midst of my sadness and loneliness, I got a condolence message from my other BFF Bri. We had a falling out a few years back, and sadly, stubbornness had kept that distance hanging. I was elated to hear from her. She adored my husband, and I had wondered why I hadn’t heard from her, thinking she’d have heard the news, but she hadn’t. When she found out, she sent me a message. I replied, and the next thing I knew, we were gabbing on the phone for hours. A few days later, we met at my husband’s grave and spent a few hours together there sitting on the grass, filling each other in on our lives while apart. The day turned into night after picking up some food and killing a bottle of wine together on my balcony at home.
The reunion was just what my heart needed, and both of us said to each other that it was my husband who subtly found a way to inform her about his demise and he knew we had to get back together. We both felt that. The whole thing was divine intervention how it all came about, and the fact that I’m pretty much family-less now (a book for another time), there is no comfort like a best friend who has been in my life for 37 years. She knows all the ghosts, good and bad, and understands my loss better than any family could ever imagine what I’m living.
God and the universe certainly do work in mysterious ways. Everything has its time and place. Yes, Zan never got here for my turbulent move, but had she come and the lockdowns coming and going, turns out, Canadians too are being made to quarantine right now still going to U.K. and I wouldn’t be interested in doing that either. Not to mention the new wave the U.K. has been experiencing much of July. Then there’s Zan’s sudden house sale and getting ready to move later this month. Suffice it to say, divine timing is looking much better for the fall than the summer. And in my deep and dark moments, waiting once again for this U.K. connection to happen, my husband and the angels were at work bringing me back together with Bri.
In the meantime, I am getting my feet deeper back into blogland. I do hope to get the mental energy up to get back to my MS I completed last fall and get that off to the editor by September. Lots of things up in the air, but definitely some good things to look forward to. I feel uplifted when I have something to look forward to, despite my loneliness and ache for my beloved husband that follows me wherever I may go, making plans and friendships are what keeps me out of ‘the dark’.
Welcome to my Sunday Book Review. Today I’m excited to share my review for Liesbet Collaert’s new release – Plunge: One Woman’s Pursuit of a Life Less Ordinary. I thoroughly enjoyed this book from cover to cover – as well as the beautiful cover. Written in a conversational style that takes us in to Liesbet’s life living in paradise – where it’s not always paradise when the daily living is not all beach and fun, but survival methods, weather obstacles, and the toll it can take on a relationship living 24/7 in close quarters.
Tropical waters turn tumultuous in this travel memoir, as a free-spirited woman jumps headfirst into a sailing adventure with a new man and his two dogs.
Join Liesbet as she faces a decision that sends her into a whirlwind of love, loss, and living in the moment. When she swaps life as she knows it for an uncertain future on a sailboat, she succumbs to seasickness and a growing desire to be alone.
Guided by impulsiveness and the joys of an alternative lifestyle, she must navigate personal storms, trouble with US immigration, adverse weather conditions, and doubts about her newfound love.
Does Liesbet find happiness? Will the dogs outlast the man? Or is this just another reality check on a dream to live at sea?
Have you ever wondered how life could be if you had made different choices? If you didn’t marry early, commit to a large loan for the house, focus on your career, start a family?
Maybe you’re just curious about how a person thinking outside the box manages? A person without boundaries, striving to be flexible, happy, and free. What you are about to read is how one such person follows her dreams, no, her intuition, and how she survives her naivety, life altering twists, and a relationship in close quarters.
Plunge is a story of what happens when you go with the flow, when you have a bright idea – or thought you had one – and ride the waves of the unknown. Ready to hop aboard and delve in?
My 5 Star Review:
Where to begin with this book? I’ll start with the genre – travel and memoir, adventure and heart is the perfect description. This author takes us with her on her journey to follow her passion for travel. We are immersed into the story by tantalizing descriptions of locales, ensuing problems that arise when living on a boat, and the dilemmas, emotions and crises that occur along her travels. What could go wrong?
Liesbet is a world traveler with no desire for the 9-5 life. After Liesbet and Karl had finished their last sailing trip, they decide to stop in California. This is where she meets her husband to be, Mark. No spoilers in that transition, so moving forward, Liesbet decides to expand her travel visa to stay in Cali long enough for her and Mark to put together a new venture to sail the seas. But after testing out the sailboat life with their two dogs, they discover that Liesbet and the two dogs were constantly seasick, so plan B became to sail by catamaran, offering more room and more stability.
Collaert is a true rock. The one you want to be on your team if you were stranded on an island. Together she and her husband sail for 8 years, staying for months at a time on various islands from Mexico to the South Seas! If you think sailing is a luxurious and relaxing adventure, think again. A boat requires tons of work to maintain, especially when you live on one, and if you knew nothing about boating before, you’ll get a good education from this book.
Living life out in nature can be difficult despite the beauty of the surroundings. I think when most of us think about living on an island we picture fun and adventures, but when this is your lifestyle, it’s not all fun and sun. Despite the many obstacles and health issues taken in consideration, Collaert invites us in to her own thoughts and decisions, and isn’t shy about sharing her personal feelings about her marriage and other circumstances and conflict that arise, as she defines her decisions and indecisions bringing us into the love story embedded in this story.
Life on the water can be tricky when there are dips in the relationship, not just the water. We are peering into relationship and its ebbs and flows. Problems mount when loved ones back home aren’t well, when Liesbet goes back to Belgium for one of her visits and has grief once again as she has to enter back into the U.S. and when Liesbet shares her soul-searching and her struggles with indecision, weighing thoughts about if she should have children.
We learn how lonely this lifestyle can sometimes be, about self-doubt, following instinct, maturity and other life lessons we absorb through the journey. We get a feel for what’s it’s like to live with someone around the clock when tensions rise. When you’re living in nature and you’re also trying to run an internet business inside a sweltering cabin with dicey internet in a tropical storm or stifling heat, we learn how difficult it is to mix business with pleasure. Often there’s nowhere to go to blow off steam when emotions escalate and everything begins to get on our nerves. The author gets an award for that one!
I admire the author for bearing her raw honesty in her story. I loved this book as it encompassed so many aspects of life – desires and passions, determination, love, fragility, travel, and heart.
Three (of many) favorite quotes: “Word storm.”, “You can’t escape your struggles. You can only carry them elsewhere.” When asked by an old friend she encountered, where she lives, Liesbet replies, “Nowhere and everywhere.”
I love wearing rings. In fact, whenever I go out it’s common practice for me to be wearing four at a time – two on each of my ring fingers and two on my index fingers. But when at home I don’t wear any.
When I go on vacation, I still always wear my signature four rings when out painting the town, albeit, the only diamond I travel with is my wedding ring along with my silver jewelry, but I’d never worn rings out to the pool or beach – that includes my wedding ring.
My husband is never short of compliments. He always compliments me on how I look or on something I’m wearing, often adding, “I’ve never seen that before.” Seen may denote he may never have noticed me wearing it, or even noticed the latest deliveries as I hastily bring up packages from the mailbox before he gets there so I can avoid being grilled, “What’s in the box?” Lol. But never had he asked me where my wedding ring was while at a pool. That was until our last winter vacation.
After almost twenty years of marriage, we were lying in our lounge chairs at the pool one day when the revelation came over him that I wasn’t wearing my wedding ring. It was like after over 100 vacations together that he only noticed I had no rings on. I remarked to him that I was amazed that he’d only waited till then to ask me where my wedding ring is.
I’ve always had a thing for wearing nothing but earrings and my ankle bracelet (besides my swimming attire) when it comes to sunning and swimming. My first reason is because I don’t like ‘tan lines’ on my fingers, and secondly, I don’t like suntan lotion getting inside the crevices of my rings and dulling the stones every time I apply. I’ve adhered to this practice ever since I can remember back and honestly, I’d never thought anything of it.
Hubby didn’t lecture me, it appeared he asked out of curiosity, but made sure to proclaim that he NEVER takes his wedding ring off. “Okay, I get it,” I replied. I didn’t wish for him to continue harping on the conversation and felt if he felt slighted in some way I didn’t want to hurt his feelings, so for the rest of the vacation I wore my wedding ring everywhere, including to the pool.
I have to admit, it felt weird having a ring on my hand in the hot sun and in the water as I found myself always double-checking to make sure the ring was still on. I still didn’t like the idea of lotion re-applying with my ring on and was paranoid of taking it off while doing so in case I’d forget to put it back on, so I’d pop it in my mouth every time I applied lotion, knowing I wouldn’t forget it was in my mouth!
As it turned out, since I began wearing the ring all the time, I didn’t have to worry about tan lines on my finger because it was always covered. Once back up to our condo and taking off my jewelry, I got to used to the ring tan line serving as a good indicator of how nicely my tan was coming along. Hubby was happy too. He no longer felt threatened that his wife was showing as ‘available’.
I’d be interested to find out who here never takes off their wedding rings when out in public and why, from both – male and female perspective.
Happy Easter all! Today’s book review is a little different, because it’s Easter Sunday today and because the book I’m reviewing has not yet been launched to the world yet, but it is on special pre-order price now off just .99 cents!
Friend and author Dan Alatorre had invited me to beta read for his newest book, Poggibonsi, and because the book is on pre-order right now, I highly recommend that if you’re looking for a fun escape with plenty of laugh out loud moments, to grab yourself a copy.
When family man Mike Torino lands a project in Italy, home of naked art, Valentino, and taxi-crashing yoga pants, he brings along his wife, hoping to rekindle their marriage. But romance gets derailed by head colds, constant bickering, and assaults from ankle-breaking cobblestone streets. Their daughter develops a gelato addiction. Mike’s Italian partner has a coronary. And as for amore . . . Mattie tells Mike to handle things himself—and storms back to America.
Mike is trapped. Leaving Italy will blow a promotion; staying might cost him his wife and family.
While reeling from Mattie’s frantic departure, a replacement liaison is assigned—a top-notch, beautiful young Italian woman who is instantly smitten with Mike and determined to reveal the passions of her homeland—whether he wants to see them or not! Normally immune, Mike is tempted—but is headstrong, voluptuous Julietta worth the risk?
Here are a few early editorial reviews:
“Funny, Sexy, Heartbreaking, Hilarious”
In Poggibonsi, Dan Alatorre tells a compelling and hilarious story while giving its serious and heartfelt themes fair treatment. Protagonist Mike Torino is a hard-working family man who is struggling in his marriage, and when temptation looms on a business trip in Italy, he can’t help but indulge. His winding and sometimes bumbling misadventure leads him on a journey that ends only when he discovers what is truly important to him.
Funny, sexy, and at times heartbreaking, Poggibonsi is much more than a riotous romp. It’s an exploration into what makes us human and drives us through life.
– Allison Maruska, The Fourth Descendant and Project Renovatio trilogy
Poggibonsi is disarmingly charming; a laugh-out-loud, bumbling romp through lust and love in central Italy. Alatorre captures the breathtaking romance of the novel’s namesake perfectly, peeling back each layer of story until all that remains is genuine, raw emotion. An outrageously funny, guilty pleasure of a read.
My 5 Star Review
A laugh out loud, sexy, humorous book with heart!
Alatorre has a gift for great storytelling. Poggibonsi is a richly woven story with humor, and hilarious sexual connotations with smoldering sex scenes done with class, but more than that!
The heart of the story centers around business and family man, Mike Torino, who is excited at the prospect to advance his career by taking a job opportunity jaunt to Poggibonsi, Italy. As Mike strives to be the perfect family man he’s deflated by his failure to please his standoffish wife and becomes vulnerable prey to a beautiful woman who brings new excitement to his humdrum manhood and ego.
Besides the shenanigans (plenty of them) going on in Italy, Mike’s confidante and personal assistant Sam, back at home, is trying to the run ship for him in his absence, encountering some crafty shenanigans herself while she tries to defend her boss’s position when things begin to go awry with the project, at the same time while trying to help him mend fences with his angry wife, who just happens to be Sam’s best friend.
Each character in the story holds a strong identity of his own and helps to round off this entertaining, fast paced, sexy. yet, family oriented story that will have you both laughing, and stifling back heartfelt tears with compassion right to the end.
I stumbled across another wonderful surprise today while checking my social media. I found this most beautiful review of my book, Have Bags, Will Travel, written by Terri Schrandt of Second Wind Leisure. Not only is it a delight to have our books reviewed, but some reviewers use some beautifully creative methods to write their reviews and Terri has done a most wonderful job.
My Five Star Review:
What I love about this novella-length book beside the fact that it’s a fast, entertaining read, is Kaye’s hilarious look inward at herself and her serious addiction to shopping. Her book reads like a series of fun blog posts, highlighting her signature, conversational style, while sharing useful travel information!
A seasoned traveler (well, except for the over-packing part—but life is short, right?), Kaye deftly reminisces her early days of travel when life was simple and “travel was a joy.” (Before TSAs!). She then describes how her obsessive shopping habit has created the need for smart packing and planning.
With everything she has purchased over the years, one would guess she has an extra house for all her goodies! Kaye’s love for travel and adventure is evident as she shares hilarious exploits and nail-biting moments on her many trips that include London, Paris, Venezuela, the Greek Islands, and on to Las Vegas and Arizona.
There’s an old saying, ‘It’s better to have loved and lost than to never have loved at all’. Every time I think of leaving beautiful Scottsdale, Arizona, I feel the sadness ooze through me. I ask myself it it would have been less painful to never have come to this place we don’t want to leave so we wouldn’t feel the unbearable sadness of having to leave the desert and mountains and our friends behind.
Of course deep in the core of me I believe it’s better to have loved and lost than to never have loved, just as I know, a taste of living in Arizona this winter was better than feeling the continual hunger to come back here. But we all know we can’t just eat one chip.
I’ve been to many places in my life, had fantastic times, felt sad to leave, but once at home it was good to be back in my own bed. But from the first time I visited this state, for only one week, I felt the pull; a pull that tugged so tightly at my soul when leaving, I didn’t want to go home.
Since the first time I left Arizona, not one day had ever passed that I didn’t imagine myself there or wish that I was there. Now that I’ve had 2 glorious months here, it is infinitely harder for me to leave.
I’m a firm believer in the ways of the universe, and what you focus on is what comes to you. I don’t know how or when, but I know nothing is more at the forefront of my desires than to live here. So I’ll have to believe when the divine timing is right, Scottsdale, Arizona is where I’ll be laying down my cowgirl hat.