I’m back. I spent the week in Gruene (pronounced Green) working on my book. Final list of accomplishments:
- 11 new pages
- Fell into the river
- Bit on the face by a fox
- Sat on a bar in a ghost town while dressed as an armed prostitute
Gruene is one of my favorite places on earth and you shouldn’t go there because you will ruin it. Unless you go one at a time. Then that’s fine. It’s tiny and picturesque and live music fills the town all night in between the sounds of trains steaming past the river. It was an abandoned ghost town for decades (apart from the one saloon/dance hall that has run continuously since the 1800’s) but now it’s a vacation spot/live music mecca and it’s bizarre and awesome. Also, I’m not getting paid to write about it. I just like it.
I stayed at the Gruene Mansion Inn which sounds really fancy except that there was no room at the mansion part of the Inn so instead I stayed in the barn house behind the Inn. Much like Jesus. Except that I had a private porch so I could look out onto the river while I worked and the only thing Jesus had to look at was a bunch of animal balls. (Not because he’s into that. Just because he was in a manger and they were probably all at eye-level. Honestly, have you ever woken up on the floor of a barn? There are balls everywhere.) My barn room had no balls whatsoever but it did have an amazing claw-footed tub that I considered stealing but I didn’t because the owners are total sweethearts and also because it seemed to be bolted heavily into the floor. Way to be untrustworthy, Gruene Mansion Inn.
The whole trip was completely awesome except for the day when I got bit in the face by a fox, but technically it’s not as bad as it sounds because the fox wasn’t actually alive at the time. I was in an antique store and I bent down to look at a candle-holder made out of a deer foot but when I stood back up my face hit a taxidermied fox head and my cheek got snagged on its tooth. And then I may have screamed a little, which caught the attention of the clerk who saw that I had a small hole in my face and I was all “I just got bit in the face by a fox” and he seemed unfazed, like that’s the kinda shit that happened all the time there and he got me a kleenex to stop the bleeding and apologized for not having a band-aid but suggested going across the street for a shot of whiskey to steady my nerves and kill the pain and then I decided to never leave Gruene because when someone blithely prescribes whiskey after you got bit in the face by a dead fox you know you’re in a good place.
I mentioned this to Victor when he called that night and he said that I really shouldn’t tell people I’d been bitten by a dead fox since a dead fox couldn’t actually close his mouth to begin with and I was all “So I should tell them what? That I got stabbed in the face by a fox head? Do you have any idea how ridiculous that sounds?” and then he agreed but probably not for the same reasons.
Then my friend Laura stopped by for lunch and as we were walking through the dance hall I said something to the effect of “OH MY GOD. We *have* to go be prostitutes” and Laura was like “Um..sure. Of course” because she’s awesome. And also an enabler. So we dressed up as saloon girls and straddled a bar and then Victor called and when I explained what we were doing he was all “WTF? YOU’RE SUPPOSED TO BE WORKING” and I was all “Well, obviously you don’t understand the creative writing process” and then he sighed that “I’m-very-disappointed-in-you” sigh and I was all “STOP JUDGING ME. I GOT BIT IN THE FACE BY A FOX THIS WEEK. Or stabbed. Something. Whatever.”
Then the guy taking our picture tried to give us pointers on how to hold the guns and we were all “We live in Texas, dude. We’ve got this.”
Then Victor found out how much I spent on beer and pictures and he was unpleased but then I pointed out that technically I saved money on this trip because there was half of a taxidermied wolverine in the shop next to my room and I didn’t buy it because it was $225 and Victor said that’s not how “saving money” works and I was all “FUCKING WOLVERINE, yo” and then he told me it was time for me to come home.
So I did come home. But first I had to pack up and when I had my room door open a squirrel ran inside and I was all “Fuck. Can I just leave this for the maids?” but then I decided that I couldn’t because that would be wrong and also because it would probably chew up the tv cables and I’d be charged for them so I tried to shoo it out but it hid behind the tub and so I decided to scare it out by stomping in the tub and bellowing deeply in the same way I imagined a bear would if a bear was in a bathtub and the squirrel ran out right as the maids were walking up to my door and I considered explaining that that wasn’t my squirrel that just ran out but I thought better of it because my explanations almost never work out well and that’s when I kind of wished that I had bought Chester A. Arthur because then I could have tucked him under my arm with a quiet dignity and I wouldn’t have had to walk past the maids alone. Plus, I totally could have used him to scare the squirrel away.
Fuck. Chester A. Arthur would have paid for himself by now.