This big house in Augusta, Georgia is my now-home.
The room on the right with the open windows is mine.
The house belongs to my publisher, Lucinda, whose welcoming smile and southern sense of hospitality have carved out a space for me that is all mine.
This afternoon I took a walk down to the Savannah River rapids. If I’d heard that name, Savannah, when I was pregnant with my daughter she’d be named for the power, grace and beauty of that word.
Like maintenance free communities all over the modern world, the wild places in Martinez, Augusta are to be found in scattered weeds, pine needles that refuse to be hemmed by trimmed lawns, treetops and puddles.
The temperature is perfect. Warm and humid, the breeze bringing stories from the east.
I find the river and sit on a low rock wall listening to the shush of the water over the stones I cannot see. I long to go down to the water’s edge, but the fact I left my windows open in that big Georgian house is pecking at my brain – I swear mine are the only open windows in all of Georgia and, after all, it’s not my house.
I walk back the way I came, for a moment scissored between clipped urban woods, a mile or so back up the road. In the house, I follow the darkened corridor to my room, the slow fan twirling on the ceiling, afternoon sunshine shooting through those wide open windows, and I close my door against the chill of the air-con ranging through the rest of the house.
. . . there’s a reason warm and sultry places throw up warm and sultry women.