My Birthday is August 20: Send Me a Present!

We were in the Braun Hotel in Hot Springs, South Dakota. Waiting for the Sioux warriors to arrive. Outside, it was bikers. Here's my small narrative description of South Dakota in summer: Bikers, bikers, bikers, bikers, BISON. Bikers, bikers, bikers, bikers, bikers, MOUNTAINS. Suddenly, my Oglala "brother" Duane came and we ate a big family breakfast and he blessed my baby girl and we jumped in the van for the depressing drive back to Chi.

This summer, it was wilder than usual. I was in NYC at the start, to watch Ted Marcoux read my story, "Bid Farewell to Her many Horses" at Symphony Space for NPR's "Selected Shorts." The tv show, Urban Latino came to film me at the writing desk. Then Cinderella and I jetted off for Poirtland, where I taught for a week at the Northwest Writing Institute at Lewis and Clar College. (Hello, my dear frienbds!) On up to the San Juan Islands for a few days of puttering--we took Chayo on a coast hike accompanied by a pod of orcas out in the water. Back to Chi and pile into the World's Biggest Van, and we drove down Route 66. Somewhere in Missouri we got licked by yaks and elk, and an ostrich tried to eat my face. In Santa Fe, I did a reading for Lannan Foundation. Lots of writers there! I read with Denise Chavez, Ben Saenz, Ruben Martinez and Ofelia Zepeda. At the event were Demetria Martinez, Jose Skinner, Chuck Bowden ("I hear they've got hootch here, and I'm going to find it!") and Carolyn Forche. We had a great time.

Back on the road: Grand Canyon, Zion, Bryce, etc etc. Bikers bikers bikers. We landed in Colorado for a minute and I did a panel for Bella Luna Books at the Antiquarian Book Fair. Supper with John Dunning, and a sleepover at Tony & Pam's donkey emporium.

Blurbs are coming in on The Devil's Highway (Little, Brown, 2004). You'll see it around March. Aside from "Selected Shorts," I'm working on another NPR show--watch this space.

Too much to tell you. Too much to write and do. Watch for me in St. Paul in October, Austin in November, and back in Tijuana in December. I'd love to meet you there.

Coolest thing thius summer: we got caught in a buffalo stampede with about 40 Hells Angels.

Loyally, L

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