This is a photo of me at Linderhof, a palace in Germany so gorgeous that it renders everything in its way gorgeous as well.
This is a bulleted list of things that happened in each country.
- I saw a kangaroo. It looked pissy. And a little manky.
- I met several thousand Australian schoolchildren.
- I bought 12 books. I thought they would fit in my luggage. They did not.
- I climbed Hanging Rock, and found out that it was supposed to be creepy. It was not.
- I hiked 4.5 hours in the Blue Mountains. I thought I was in shape. I was not.
- I saw the Alps. My Virginia mountains would fit neatly inside them and the Alps would still be hungry.
- I learned German readers had made Linger (Ruht Das Licht) #13 on the overall bestseller list in Germany. Yikes.
- I met people without nicknames and gave them some, because everyone needs one.
- I met up with colleagues I'd met before: Dominic "The Magician" and Margarete "Irish" Schwartkopf and "the Js," Judith & Jeanette.
- I did events with people I'd not met before: Max "The Chainsaw" Felder, the voice of the Sam on the German audiobook.
- I learned that my college German had not prepared me to order at the grocery store meat counter.
- I hung out on a Bavarian farm. Thing 1 got licked by a cow. I did not.
- I went to Oktoberfest. Some people wore lederhosen and dirndls. I did not.
- On the way to an event, someone in our car threw up six times. I did not.
- I bought some Paris fashion. By which I mean a plaid shirt.
- I learned I am bad at French vowels. However, I can say "C'est bon!" and "C'est mauvais!"
- I was filmed twice. I was afraid I'd have to have make-up done. I did not.
- I saw the Notre Dame. I thought I was too jaded to be impressed. I totally wasn't.
- I hoped to get the change to go to the Louvre to see some more works of my dead artistic boyfriend, John Singer Sargent. I did not.
And here is the video — three countries in five minutes. I am very, very pleased to be able to feature a song from a band that I love, Menomena. They've kindly given me permission to use "Intil." Let me know what you guys think of the song (and if you love it, it's on iTunes and on Barsuk) and if you DO love it, please do hit their Twitter or Facebook and make noise about where you found out about them. And again a huge, huge thanks to readers for reading my books all over the world and making me feel welcome wherever I go.