China World Hotel. Did you see the New York Times today? At left is the cover of the Magazine section, showing congested traffic in Beijing. But that isn’t what I noticed. The shot is taken right in front of the “China World Trade Center,” the complex that houses both the hotel where I normally stay when I’m in Beijing and the World Bank Office. (Also in the paper today was a favorable review of Ivan Doig’s new novel, by Sven Birkerts, Editor of Agni; I’ve twice picked it up in the store and put it down again, but Birkerts may have pushed me over the edge.)
Where the Deer and the Lawn Mower Play. If I were a deer, I don’t think I’d run toward the roar of a lawn tractor, but it happens in my yard a couple of times a year. Yesterday I was mid-mow when two sizable deer streaked through the gap in the hedges (coming, I suppose, from the woods across the street). They got to the big walnut tree and stopped, then looked at me. I kept mowing. One of the deer was uninterested and ran off into the opposite woods, but one just stood there watching me. I wondered if this was the same animal that has been munching on the hosta and day lilies in my yard. Eventually I had to turn the mower down the hill toward her and she didn’t think that was funny at all, bounding away after her friend.
The Twelve Minutes. Because of my Sewanee Writers’ Conference scholarship, I get to do a 12 minute reading (to whomever shows up for these things at, I think, 9:00 am). Picking what I’ll read (the conference is still two weeks away) is fun and challenging. I’ve written only one really short story, the one that will come out in RE:AL this fall, but it took almost 18 minutes when I timed myself reading it this morning. Doing the math, I’m looking now for a 7 page chunk of something to read. Hmm.