About Me

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I received teaching and engineering degrees and have traveled extensively, living ten years outside the US. I moved from the big city of Houston to a small sleepy community in North Carolina, which has been a tremendous change and a great inspiration for my novels, full of the local color. My time has been filled with writing and helping to physically construct three additions to our former farmhouse. I have a great view of the mountains ten miles away across the broad valley and the sunsets are breathtaking. I am an avid reader of all kinds of mystery and contemporary fiction.

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Reminder of Childhood Memories

Reminder of Childhood Memories

Pilot Mountain is a landmark that is recognized by most North Carolinians living in the Piedmont region whether it's on canvas or whether we are traveling along US Route 52. It towers to about 1400 feet in a rather flat terrain and was a beacon to native Americans and early settlers for hundreds of years. I guess living here we take it for granted when traveling from smaller communities to the larger cities of Winston-Salem or Greensboro. I took this picture this past week on our weekly trek to the "larger city" to buy the essentials such as port and cheese. It is now a state park and is a place for climbers and visitors, some of which have lost their lives falling from the paths.

I remember as a small child traveling to Florida and my father would always point the mountain out to me. The Saura Indians called it Jomeokee or "Pilot" or "Great Guide." I guess we take our GPSes for granted and don't realize that the earlier people used such landmarks as an indication of where they were or where they were going.

Geologically it's a quartzite formation that was formed billions of years ago and was dedicated in the 1970s as a National Natural Landmark. No matter what the formation was and is, it is a constant reminder of long ago memories of wonderful summer vacations.

Sunday, June 23, 2013



It's blueberry season again. Yesterday we picked 3 quarts of blueberries from 2 bushes and another several quarts today. The first bush has smaller berries, are flavorful and prolific. The second bush produces a smaller quantity of blueberries, but they are 3 times larger than the others and much sweeter and juicier. It doesn't matter what. I eat blueberries almost every day and it is good that these are free.

I did say free. Well, I had to pay for the bushes 8 years ago and then we had to put fences around them to keep the birds and squirrels away. Come to think of it, I guess they aren't free. But they are so much better than store-bought blueberries.

Instead of eating an apple today, I ate a half cup of blueberries. I froze some that I will use when the cost of blueberries will skyrocket. I don't know about the rest of the country, but in North Carolina a package of blueberries less than a pint will run about $3.99, sometimes $4.99, in the fall and winter. I have many more quarts to gather and will enjoy them until they no longer bear fruit.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013



Yesterday was a great day for wildlife. Right after it rains, we get more rabbits, squirrels, turkeys and deer than at any other time. Yesterday was no exception.

We have about 12 acres of land around our property that has to be mowed and thujas are planted in the distant front yard. As I was mowing, I saw a tiny creature appear and thought it was a rat, but it turned out to be a tiny bunny. It was so cute and kept running back and forth, not knowing which way to turn. Finally, I finished mowing that section of the yard and I saw the bunny hop between the thujas.

Usually in the winter and spring we see dozens of turkey, but in the summer only a few turkeys appear. Sometimes only one will appear and it looks so lonesome. When those birds fly, they are majestic. I have seen them fly over trees that are fifty feet tall.

I took no pictures of the squirrels because I get so irritated with them. They ruin my blueberries and fruit trees. Putting fences around and on top of the blueberry bushes are time consuming and expensive. Somehow those pesky creatures make their way to the bushes, but hopefully not this year with the new fence.

The deer have been scarce this year because everyone in the neighborhood has grown corn. Hopefully, that means they will not be around to eat the tops out of the day lilies or munch on tender young tree leaves. I like watching the wildlife, but I can do without the destruction they bring.