There is an advantage to leaving Asheville at 7:30AM: Arrival at the gates to Kiawah Island at 12:30 pm. Gates? Yes, gates. It’s not a gated community – it’s a gated island from what I can tell. Not the kind of place I’d want to live (I’m not into planned communities), but a glorious place to spend a week writing, for sure.
My pictures won’t do the place justice, but you can click here for the property listing.
From our lovely two-level back deck, we can see and hear the ocean. It takes all of thirty seconds to get from our deck to the water’s edge – which I did twice yesterday walking first with Lois and then with Lynne. In this picture, you see my coat drying on a chair. My morning walk was a bit soggy. Which wasn’t bad. The rumbles of thunder didn’t really bother me, either. But when that thunder cracked, I decided it was time to turn around.
There are lots of nice thing about trips with retired folks. The big one: they have time. Don’t get me wrong – these women do plenty in their retirement. Writing classes, volunteer work, playing with grandchildren, time and trips with friends. But they also have time to do things like search for the location for this years retreat. And look what they found! All I had to do was look at the listings they sent and say, “Yeah – that looks good.” Within days, Lois had booked it. I sent her my check and a few months later she mailed out directions and gate passes. For a girl who’s been planning travels on her own for years, this is heaven.
Another great thing about the time these retired folks have: they use it to plan for trips like these. Lois and Lynne brought all sorts of food. So far, I’ve had Lois’ chocolate cake, white chili, and cowboy caviar (all homemade!). I’ve also shared some of Lynne’s pistachios and tea. They also brought, between the two of them, a printer, games, and all sorts of writing magazines and journals.
Lynne said the other night that she never has a problem coming up with things to list in her gratitude journal. I haven’t kept a gratitude journal lately, but I do find myself being thankful for so many things. Many days I’ll stop and think, “Wow – is this my life?!” The other night I had that song from the Sound of Music playing in my head, “Somewhere in my youth or childhood, I must have done something good.” I have good friends, good food, time away, time to write, time to travel. As Lois says, “Life is grand.”