Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Where the Wild Things Grow

by Deb/Hannah

Mind Your Own Beeswax hit the shelves yesterday. Book 2 in the Queen Bee series. I should have been out promoting - driving to bookstores, signing stock, setting up events. All that will happen, but it didn't get done yesterday. You'll never guess what I did instead.

Long ago, I learned how important the natural world is to my psychic balance. Give me some quiet time in the woods and I'm rejuvenated. Especially if I'm on a quest. Growing up in the Michigan Upper Peninsula where living off the land was part of the experience, my family hunted the forests, pastures, and streams. We weren't hunting live game (okay, maybe some of us were). Depending on the time of year, we were out to find strawberries, blueberries, or raspberries. Berry picking was big. Grandma would give me a coffee can & send me out to fill it. While the bees buzzed, I filled my can (and my mouth).

There's something truly magical about being in the woods alone.

So yesterday I catered to the inner me by wandering through the woods behind my house. It's too early for berries. Too early for just about everything. This year I'm on a mission to find ramps (wild leeks). I've heard they grow in my area. And that they are a cross between a very pungent garlic clove & an onion. You know you've found one after you taste the leaf part. If you taste garlic, that's it. Then you dig up the bulb part, trot home with your treasure, and never tell anybody where they grow.

Yesterday, I tasted a few leaves. Not them. One was really nasty. I wonder what it was.

Those are ramps in the picture above. Not my picture. Not my ramps. But I didn't get published by 'bee'ing a quitter.

BTW, today I'm visiting bookstores. What a life!


Katreader said...

I was visiting West Virginia the first time I had ramps. I adore them! I'd be nervous searching and picking them myself though. While I love a good romp in the forest, I don't know my plants that well. I'd be afraid I'd choose something poisonous!

Dru said...

Congrats on your book release.

Sarita said...

Congratulations on your new book!

And I love it that you took a walk in the woods. I do that, too. But I've got to admit, I'm not as brave as you are. No leaf tasting for me. :)

Maggie Sefton said...

I'm with you, Deb. I simply HAVE to have time alone in nature regularly in order to stay sane. :) Growing up in VA, there were woods and forested areas that were perfect for wandering. But VA had poisonous plants and other itchy ones growing in the woods like poison ivy, poison oak, & poison sumac. I still don't know what poison oak or sumac look like. I'm afraid I'd wind up with an itchy tongue.

Anonymous said...

Deb, (or should I address you as "Hannah" today?), I discovered that in the Mystery Scene magazine (number 118) given away at the Malice convention, your first Queen Bee Mystery was reviewed on page 50!!!

I'm looking forward to reading the second one.

Shirley in Baltimore

Rita B said...

Oh Deb, I can so relate. Being a yooper my self, the woods is the one thing I truely miss the most. The quiet alone time there is the best. When our kids were still at home. They were old enuff to have the option to come along or stay home. The ?? "What ya gonna do"? Answer..."Sit and watch the trees grow". Funny thing they didn't seem to think that was very exciting :^p

signlady217 said...

Congrats on the new book release!

My grandma didn't just send us to pick wild stuff, she went out with us because she wanted to be out there as much or more than we did. Poke, dandelion greens, sassafras roots, all kinds of (weird) stuff. This brings back a lot of great memories of her. Thanks!

Kristin A. said...

I agree with Katreader and Maggie - be careful what you go tasting! :)

And good for you for taking a day to feed your mind and your spirit. The rest can wait a day, can't it? A good reminder for all of us. True there is a saying "why put off 'til tomorrow...", but at times we need to put off until tomorrow so that today we can take care of more important things, ourselves included!

Erika Chase said...

Looking forward to reading this newest book!
I find that communing with water is both relaxing and rejuvenating. But since I live far away from the ocean these days, a walk in the woods is a good replacement. Even if this soggy weather calls for hip-waders & rain jacket.

Aurian said...

I love a walk in the woods, looking at everything that grows and blooms and is green. Not much time for that, and not much woods in the city ofcourse.
Congratulations on your new book! and good luck with all the promotion work.

Fiona L. Woods said...

I grew up in Snohomish, Washington (state), which is in the foothills of the Cascade mountains. We went out looking for berries, wild apples, any kind of fruit we could find. We'd bring it home where our mother would make jelly, jam, and pie filling. Love the woods. You bring back good memories!

Linda McDonald said...

Congrats on the book release! A walk in the woods alone sounds wonderful to me. When I need to rejuvenate I head for someplace near the water. Either the ocean or the bay, by myself. I love it.

Title Loans said...

I love going and getting lost in the woods. My mom lives on the coast in Oregon, so every time I go home to visit her I take a wander. It's so relaxing and magical; like it's your own secret garden.

Vickie said...

OH boy!! I feel a trip to the bookstore coming on.