Joining in with the online discussion on the book “On Being A Writer” by Ann Kroeker and Charity Singleton Craig. Today we are working through Chapter 4: Notice. Why is noticing important? How can we improve our noticing skills? Why and how does noticing enhance our writing lives?
I carefully packed my clothes away in my red suitcase. After double-checking our lists, I zipped up the suitcase and set it against the wall. My sister’s lopsided suitcase with the broken off leg leaning gently against my suitcase.
My alarm clock rang with its annoying buzz the next morning as I headed off to worship. Dear sweet children gathered around my feet for the children’s sermon. After worship, we headed down stairs past the quilters room and Brides room into our gathering space. We sat and broke bread together. The hours after worship seemed to crawl by much like a very slow turtle.
Finally the clock struck 2:30 pm. A text from my dear friend CT came through on my phone. She was on her way to pick us up. Ann and I stood by the door, suitcases by our side, waiting not so patiently to get our adventure started. CT arrived. I quickly locked the doors to my house. Then we loaded the carefully packed suitcases into her car. She dropped us off at the airport but not before wrapping each of us in her arms as she hugged us goodbye.
CT drove off and Ann and I stood in line. I successfully went through security while Ann was taken off to the side. Not exactly sure why she was pulled out but after a quick check, she was also waved through. We each grabbed our items out of the security bins and slipped our shoes back onto our feet. Then we found our seats and waited for our flight.
Finally the plane arrived and we began boarding for our flight. The first half of our flight from Minot to Minneapolis was extremely short just enough time for the flight attendants to pass out snacks and beverages before we were descending down into Minneapolis. After landing, we got off the plane and walked from our current gate to our next gate and almost immediately began boarding our flight for Nashville.
After finding our seats, we soon were taking off. I grabbed onto the chair in front of me until we were at our cruising altitude. In the air, we looked out the window. A sea of fluffy white marshmallow clouds was sprawled out in front of us. It felt like we could reach out and touch them.
Soon we were descending into Nashville. After landing, Ann and I found our way to baggage claim where we picked up her lopsided suitcase. I had carried my suitcase onto the plane as a carry-on. After a few moments, Ann spotted her suitcase. She wound her way through the crowd of people waiting and grabbed her suitcase. With suitcases in hand, we walked out into the hot humid August Nashville air. Luckily we found a cab waiting area and there was no one in line. The attendant told us the cost of the cab ride $26, loaded our suitcases into the cab, and then the cab driver opened the door for us. We got into the vehicle and sat down.
On our way to the hotel, the cab driver asked us where we were from and if this was our first time in Nashville. As we drove along, we sat glancing out the window, taking in the sights and sounds of this new place we were now visiting. Before we knew it, we arrived at the hotel; the Hyatt Place which is only three years old and used to be a parking garage. It was so close to downtown Nashville that we could walk everywhere.
A concierge was waiting on the sidewalk as the taxi driver pulled up. The concierge pulled our suitcases from the taxi. We paid the taxi driver and thanked him for our ride.
Through the glass doors, we entered the hotel into the lobby of the hotel. In front of us, behind the front desk, stood this wall full of words describing the city of Nashville: music, bright lights, etc. We took in the wall and our new surroundings as we waited. Finally we were next in line. And we soon were checked into our hotel.
With our keys in hand, Ann and I wheeled our luggage…well kind of wheeled since Ann’s one leg was broken off…to the elevator. We pushed the round button for the elevator to come to us. It came. We stepped into the elevator and pushed the button for the 7th floor. The elevator ascended. We stepped out of the elevator, turned right, and then turned left down a long narrow hallway. Soon we arrived at the door to our room. We slid the key into the door and opened the door.
Ann and I sat down our luggage and inhaled the landscape before us. Right as you came in the room, the bathroom was to our right. Taking a few more steps, there was a couch set before us much like a living room. On the bottom shelf of the bookcase, lay a hard covered book about Nashville and its many sights. On the top shelf, lay a soft white blanket. Standing next to the end of the couch was a room divider. On the other side of the room divider were two queen side beds with an end table between them. On the opposite wall was a closet. Next to the closet was the television which stood on a dresser. There also was a small refrigerator which stood on floor near the dresser. Next to the dresser was a full length mirror. Next to my bed was a huge picture window. With the curtains open, the view out that window was the view of a rooftop pool at a neighboring hotel.
Next to the closet was a little nook. That empty space next to the closet became the place where all of my belongings were sprawled out throughout the week…my suitcase, souvenirs, my shoes and the list goes on. The space next to the couch became the area where my sister laid out her belongings during the week.
After a long day of traveling, our stomachs were growling for food. We took the elevator down to the hotel lobby and to the restaurant/bar in the hotel. We perused over the menu and then placed our order; a cheese quesadilla. The waiter asked us where we were from and we told him North Dakota. He smiled back at us and said I can tell. (Apparently we had a pretty prominent accent!) Our order came. We bit into our food; the ooey gooey cheese tasted so good in our mouths. We quickly devoured our food.
Once our meal was finished, we rode the elevator back up to our hotel room. After sliding the key in the door and entering back into our room, we changed into our pjs, pulled back the covers, and crawled into our beds as we drifted off to dreamland. Waking up refreshed and renewed for what would be an epic joy-filled fun week in Nashville together.
Our trip was only just beginning…..