I think I received more emails from folks about how much they love Jacksonville, and I have to visit X, Y or Z while I’m in town, than I have any other city I’ve recently visited.

The flight here was uneventful – an exit row was the key to my joy, and excellent knitting (Hannah socks), and a new British History book on my ipod.

Why is it that yarn looks so much better on a plane? Is it the quality of the light up above the clouds?

Speaking of looking good – I’m in Jacksonville! It’s absolutely beautiful here. Lovely. And it’s 70 degrees. I’m insane enough to love snow, and cold, but I’m also no fool.

I only wish Gerry could be here to enjoy the hot tub (he got an okay to go into a pool from his doctor – but she’d prefer we wait until Spring. I feel that will be key to him being able to begin to develop the muscles that have atrophied in the past year)

So here I am, in my great and comfy hotel room, on TV a political festival, and my knitting laid out in front of me. Life is good.

Tea is brewing, cookies are here and I’m missing Gerry and the kids (not good, but bittersweet in that I have such an amazing family to miss… Tonight is Hannah’s school concert and I’m so blue that I’m missing it. Dang.)

I found out minutes before I left that due to a misunderstanding the yarn shop hadn’t made a hotel reservation, That’s really my fault, I don’t think I was clear enough – I obviously need to make that portion of my letter of agreement easier to understand.

This is how we learn, right?

It’s no big deal – and actually probably turned out for the best because I used Priceline and got a SWEET room at the Radison for $65. Yay!

Then I visited my favorite car rental site, carrental.com, and got a really lovely rate for 2 days- $17/day at Alamo – which turns out to be cheaper than cabs!

I know it’s a good rate when the clerk at the desk is impressed…

So I’m here, I’m free, I have the lovely time to decompress and unwind.

The absolute hardest thing about what I do is getting the professional Annie separated from Annie-the-buddy. Both Annies need time to ‘get over’ a flight (and need to have time to just have the meanies every now and then.)

That’s SO hard when you’re getting a ride from someone – so hard for them, and so hard for me to be “on” and up and good/kind/sweet when I’m still switching time zones and grumbling about airport layouts.

So the ability to rent a car is my idea of a dream. I’m in heaven. Yay.

And this way I get to see scenery – and go places on my own – and I’m not tied to a hotel restaurant!

So I went for a drive – across the street – and got a salad and brought it back to my hotel room. A salad and a beer, dinner of the gods.

Speaking of dinner of the gods, a friend made us some soup recently and it was delicious. SO delicious, as a matter of fact, that I found myself waking up and sneaking downstairs at 6:00 am to have a bowl.

And the soup is supposed to be good for us, too. That was a kind and dear thing – and so much better than sneaking downstairs for a cookie. Thank you!

Gotta run – Keith’s on and I have some knitting to do. Heaven, I tells ya!

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