Rituals figure highly in my life, it seems. Put on a certain CD before I start writing, or change the atmosphere somehow, is the first active ritual that comes to mind.
Our annual trip to the desert is another. It's become a family ritual. Every year for so many years--perhaps even since Travis was in first grade--the first week after school is out, we're desert bound. (Don't worry: Nigel and Rosie have company at the house and are being cared for.)
Where we stay has changed, though. Used to be the Korakia (where Brian and I honeymooned), or The Willows, in Palm Springs, but as Travis got older, we started staying at resorts--mostly for the pool (for him).
The last few years we've come to Rancho Las Palmas. It has everything we need: the pool, a Lazy River, a good view from the room, which is what you see here, and an attentive staff, esp. the undisputed champ of guest services, Connie Orsak. She always makes our time here special. Rancho is also across the street from The River, which has restaurants, movies, and a bookstore. Always need a bookstore nearby... Last night after dinner, we walked over to Borders and I bought the New Yorker "The Talk of the Town: Special Issue."
I also tried to talk to an employee about what I read, that Borders was closing stores and were they closing? But he walked away from me, looking sort of angry, saying it wasn't true. A very strange interaction. Travis was watching, shaking his head. We agreed that he was so defensive, it must be true. This morning I Googled it and yes, Borders across the street at The River is slated (tragically!) to close. I hope another bookstore goes in that space. It just won't be the same, The River without a bookstore! We'll have to drive down the street and dine near Barnes & Noble!