If you happen to be in the Dingle area (that is, in Ireland) on Tuesday, please come by the Dingle Bookstore to hear me read from the project I'm working on. We'll be there at 7:30 and it'd be great to see you in person.
So that's fun news.
Now for an embarrassing story.
I took my afternoon nap today, and I woke up because a gaggle of people had come into the hall outside my room at the BnB and started talking loudly. I was then reminded that no, it wasn't four in the morning and I couldn't sleep anymore, because there was a lecture from a famous Irish author, Kevin Barry, that was about to take place in the parlor room across the hall.
I jumped up, my hair in my face and my jeans sagging, and I grabbed my bag and my keys and my phone, and I ran out of the door ... right into a red-headed dude in a striped shirt who was very obviously Kevin Goddamned Barry.
"Hello," he said, and me, still half-asleep, muttered a "hello," trying to get around him and the landlord's daughter who was fangirling him. But then he put out his hand. "I'm Kevin."
Well, of course you're Kevin.
"I'm Jen," I muttered. And he said, "Good to meet you," or something, or maybe he didn't, but I definitely did scuttle, and I used that word earlier, but it was indeed a scuttle, I scuttled away from him and into the parlor room.
"Cheers?" he said after me.
And I wanted to die.
I'd signed up to have dinner with Kevin Barry and sit next to him, and I let someone else have my seat. Ted asked me why, and honestly it was because I needed a place to kick out my leg, but we know me, and if I really wanted that seat, I would have said damn be to the leg and done it anyway.
I'm not good at talking to famous authors. I'm not good at talking to strangers. And I'm not good at talking to strange famous authors who I run into with my fat hair in my eyes and one shoe in my hand.
Kevin was an amazing reader, and I absolutely adored his book. I wish I had the courage to tell him that. I know that I will need to get better at talking to impressive people if I'm not going to be trampled over in this world. But it just wasn't happening tonight.
I went out with my fellow students to a pub, where we listened to Irish music play. The more I delve into Ireland, the more I feel like I'm entering my father's world. I feel close to him out here, a quarter of a world away, and it's stirring up a lot of feelings that I'm sure would make a good poem if I was a poet. I think I'm going to need a couple of years or something to suss out everything this trip means to me, but I do know I won't be forgetting it soon.
I started scribbling things down while I listened to the music, but I bet none of it is any good.
I'll just put the first line here:
When my father was in Ireland, it never rained.