Friday, September 14, 2018

The Last Day.

I confess that I did spend some time at the pool at Bouchercon.

It was noisy.

There was a building site right beside it, and then the decibels increased when three pneumatic squawkers  joined us one day.   These are native to Florida I believe. Ladies.  Tattoed. Very Vocal.  Bits of gold on their phones and ankles. Enhanced surgically. Loud. Lots of nails.  Old enough to know better. And if I may say, just a big wrinkly due to over exposure to the sun.  They are feel the need to  vocalise everything. I mean everything. Even from opposite ends of the pool. When two went to the bar the third one got on her phone. Anyway I made notes on who was sleeping with who and what they  were going to do about it.

And they  ask where crime writers get their  ideas... What is it they say? A human survives three minutes without oxygen, three days without water and three months without food.....How long do Florida Squawkers last without talking?


Florida has beautiful but very noisy clouds

Writing a novel transatlantically... crew USA

And crew UK- all from the middle of the  country and up!

talking of up... the roof of the ballroom

my house has a  ceiling like this.... picked out on those colours

this is pretty much how Stan's panel went.....

coffee... there was lots of coffee...

another pic, a ghostly couple...unlike those at the pool who were more of a ghastly trio!

The long view, Stan's panel

Not even glued down. Now in my suitcase... 

The foyer lights

This is the sign for reception

More unusual art. Is that with a really high speed shutter? Anyone?

The baby squirrel that so loved a certain crime writer's testicles.

The Vinoy  from the small bridge

Hotel lobby

Huge porcelain clam flowers in the foyer 

My house looks like this

and this

More in the foyer on the way to the ladies loos

She looks like she's been in the queue for a long time

Croc on the floor,  or alligators?

Signing area, the last morning

The ladies.


The best panel, not being biased, was this one. She was a good moderator with a light touch.
It was about writing about places you don't live, looking at a place with an outsiders  view.
The lady ( don't recall her name but she was sitting next to the American lady with the Irish name who wrote about France) who writes about Japan said something  I will hold onto. She said the Japanese will never say 'You are wrong.' They have a different expression. They say 'My view is different to yours.'
Obviously I would need to extend that to 'My view is different to yours and I am right.' ( Female perspective there).  
But seriously, it's a subtle point that made me think. It could defuse arguments as well as ' I'd rather be happy than right.'

At times, it's very difficult being a writer.

I hope where ever you are, Florence leaves you alone. 

We are down in Indian Rocks, thinking about our flight home.

Caro Ramsay 


  1. I too was at the pool when the squawkers were there. Caro used typical Scottish understatement above in describing them. She also misspoke when calling them 'ladies'.

    1. Stan, I was being really polite. Which is not like me, granted!

  2. Ahh, the Florida squawkers. If only they were a rare breed, but I'm sorry to say a similar species turns up every summer on Mykonos shores, outfitted in the the same plumage (or less), and effecting their banshee mating cries in a variety of exotic tongues.... If only a Silent Spring could be selective.

  3. I'm disappointed, Caro, I expected pictures of the gentlemen's loo as well.

    1. Even in my MIE research hat, I cannot and will not be persuaded to transition to an XY. I will not be converted, even to explore the loos in posh hotels. The surgery would involve having bits of my brain removed....:)

  4. Caro, I am so sorry that I missed seeing you. I can see that they've done the hotel over since the Historical Novel Society met there in 2013 (It's where Susan and I first met :)) ). I have to say I look the old decor better--but then you know us historical types.

    I so missed being with all of you, but I am really glad I stayed home and went instead to the Maryknoll Sister's Gala on Ellis Island. Missionary nuns who bravely go all over the world to help the ignored and poverty stricken are--it seems to me--the polar opposite of squawkers in bathing suits. they made very good company indeed!

    1. I missed you too AM but it was good to use Stans techno know how and hook up by phone.
      Hope things are going better for you know, more settled at least. Do you think you will be at Dallas?