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Saturday, June 29, 2013

On the road with Sandy Sullivan, PART 2

We arrived at my apartment in time for me to throw a few things in my suitcase before the car service driver pulled up. My husband and son helped the driver load two incredibly heavy suitcases and two boxes into the car. Sometimes I wonder why we don't sell stories on matchbooks.
The driver and I had a lively discussion on how to get to our location. He had a GPS and yours truly shut up before he smacked me in the head. Sandy was smart and sat quietly in the back seat, not taking sides.
After hauling everything up to our beautiful suite, Sandy discovered a broken wheel on her suitcase. That'll teach you to haul 150 lbs. of books in there every week! 

Still, now we had a problem. Noticing a small strip mall behind the hotel, we prayed that we'd find a store with a suitcase before we had to be at the barbecue Saturday at noon.
Checking her facts, Sandy discovered that the barbecue wasn't being held at the hotel, like we thought, but on Jones beach, 15 miles away. We now had no way to get there and two suitcases loaded with books to sell. Grrr. 
The skies looked ominous and we worried about setting out our books drenched by a sudden downpour. A plastic tarp would be good but we didn't have one? 

The room has a kitchen and is nice and bright and sunny. The air conditioning was blasting away, making the room cold enough to keep meat. 

Even Sandy was shivering. We had to call the desk to find out how to regulate it.
We were not battling even .200!  Kim, the lady in charge, arranged for us to get a ride to the barbecue. We knocked off, praying things would look up in the morning. We met the woman and her husband who would be driving us at breakfast. Good. Then we were off to find a replacement suitcase.
 Tramping around the back alley, there were several stores but nothing that looked like it had a suitcase. We did find a dollar store and went in there to ferret out some small bags for anyone who bought more than one book.
Lo and behold! This dollar store carried luggage! Sandy found just the right bag for a decent price. And they had plastic tablecloths for the books, and small bags, as well as candy and even a gold dish!! We were batting .1000!
Returning to the hotel, we packed up our books then the fire alarm went off. We trudged down the stairs and decided to walk to Seven Eleven to get sunscreen while the fire department checked out the hotel. Visions of our books going up in flames danced in my head. But I ignored it.
We bought some supplies, including a little hard lemonade for after the barbecue and returned.
In no time at all, we were in front of the dunes at Jones beach with a delightful group of readers and authors, hawking our books and chatting up the book club members. 

After stuffing ourselves with grilled meats, pasta salads, veggies, cookies. brownies and such, we took a little walk down to the ocean. 
Although we only sold about 15 books between the two of us, we spent a delightful day in the fresh salt air by the ocean, making new friends. This is what connecting with readers is all about.

BTW, I won two gift baskets of books and will be returning with many more books than I had when I left. Please don't tell DH. 


Melissa Keir said...

Now that sounds like a trip! I'd have been so stressed! :) Glad it all worked out.

Tabitha Shay said...

Even dealing with stress, you two still had fun...that's great....A day at the beach sounds perfect to me...

Lindsay said...

Another great adventure. Glad everything worked out in the end.

SherryGLoag said...

So? Which story is all this adventure going into? Sounds like you had an eventful trip, but a good one.

Carolyn Gibbs said...

Had a great time Thursday and Friday. What a full day you had, I love Jones Beach.

M. S. Spencer said...

A day at the beach takes care of everything, doesn't it? And besides as we all know--these experiences make great stories! Meredith
p.s. only went to Jones B. once when working for the summer in NYC--we spent 5 hours in traffic getting there! I don't remember much else :)