One of my favorite parts of the beach (in addition to the walks, the eating, the drinking, the talking, the sleeping) is thinking about books. The novels I’m reading, the books I’m writing. The books I learn about from Sarah and Dale. What I pick up from these two is really something. Sarah in particular is a voracious reader; I’ve never met anyone or seen anything like it before. This week she is reading through the novels of Elizabeth Taylor (not the American actress! The British novelist, who wrote twelve, evidently amazing, novels). And the nice thing about Sarah is that I almost never can read a book she hasn’t read. This week I was devouring Vanity Fair. Oh yes, she was examined on it for her Alevels (back when she was, like 17, before heading off to read English at Oxford. And yes, she can still talk about it….)

Among other things, since this beach holiday always comes at the end of the school year, I spend some time thinking back over what I’ve accomplished, in the writing department, over the last year, while looking out over the ocean, catching an occasional glimpse of a dolphin or two, possibly with a drink in hand or a cigar in mouth (or vice versa).

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