Wish You Were Here

Right now I need a slice of Wanda’s Key lime pie.

You haven’t yet had the pleasure of Wanda’s company.  She’s one of the women of Happiness Key.  Wanda bakes pies when she’s stressed.  She bakes pies when she’s happy, too.  In fact Wanda bakes so many pies, she’s always on the lookout for friends to give them to.  So where is Wanda when I need mine?

Four Beach Chairs.jpgAnd where’s Tracy?  Summer’s coming, and I could use some fashion pointers.  After years of spending afternoons and thousands on Rodeo Drive, Tracy’s circumstances have been sadly reduced.  But she still loves to shop, even if there’s been a slight change of venue.  Now she really knows how to spot a bargain.

And Alice?  Who better than Alice to explain the reverse half-crochet stitch I need for my granddaughter’s new sweater?

Then there’s Janya.  I’m looking for a fun new way to exercise.  Bollywood dancing sounds exactly right.  Janya would be the one to help me get started.  And since she’s innately kind and sensitive, she would help, I know.  If I could find her.

The first time I realized I had escaped into the land of Never-Never, I was driving down a road in Gainesville, Georgia looking for a mailbox with “MacDonald” on it.  I had written five books about five MacDonald sisters in Gainesville, and there I was, fully expecting to find the old farmhouse where they had grown up.  Of course that was years ago, and the lapse lasted only seconds.  I quickly remembered that the MacDonalds weren’t “real,” that they only existed in my imagination and my readers’.  Still, for those moments. . .

Since then, this has happened many times.  Today I can’t drive the back roads of the Shenandoah Valley without expecting to find Helen’s house, or to spot Cissy and Reese picking blackberries.  I’m sure I’ll run into Granny Grace on her way to a meeting of the SCC Bee, or Jamie and Cash taking the girls into town for ice cream. 

Now, it’s happening again.  Yesterday, after weeks of flu recovery, I finally tuned back into the lives of the women of Happiness Key and Fortunate Harbor, and our hours together were a blissful reunion.  “Where have you been?” they demanded.  I explained and they were properly sympathetic.  Then they proceeded to catch me up.

So, okay, maybe watching and writing about their world wasn’t quite as special as a slice of pie, a shopping trip, crochet or Bollywood dancing lessons, but it was awfully close. 

Still, when I visit family and Florida this winter, I’m hoping to meet my friends on the beach.  I’ll be sure to send you a postcard from Never-Never land if I do. 

Wish you were here. . .  


  1. Marna on May 19, 2009 at 11:00 am

    Can’t wait to meet them. Will have to make some pie for the occassion.

  2. Emilie Richards on May 19, 2009 at 12:10 pm

    Definitely Key lime, with Wanda’s favorite touches. Yum.

  3. Lynn Ross - Toledo on May 25, 2009 at 1:37 pm

    But, Emilie, I am there! I can’t wait to be transported to wherever your heroes and heroines happen to be, doing whatever ever they happen to be doing next. You make it so easy. Keep up the good work!

  4. Emilie Richards on May 25, 2009 at 1:53 pm

    Thanks, Lynn!

  5. mary Garrett on June 29, 2009 at 11:21 am

    Good food, good friends, good conversation = happiness.
    I’m always happy when participating in aqua-aerobics at the Y.
    Happiest of all? Telling stories to appreciative children and adults . . . hearing stories and sharing in the journey . . .

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