Tuesday, December 18, 2007


I think I am getting a Southern accent. I listen to myself talk and I notice that my speech has slowed down. Now, admittedly, this is in part because in order for anyone to understand you here in the south, you have to slow down. My New-York-speak is just too fast. But I still detect a hint of a lilt---something lighter—something that has taken the roughness out of my “r-r-rochestaaar.”

It is funny. Because where I live no one is truly Southern. The majority of my neighbors are from the Northeast. My Starbucks in Charlotte is full of out-of-towners this morning – as it is every morning (and I would know). The couple from my left are – maybe Indian. They are English speaking, and having an intellectual conversation about something—I would listen but I can’t hear them over the couple to my right. The couple to the right of me are loud-talkers. She is from Silicon Valley. He is from Connecticut. They are both in real estate and are having an intense conversation about flipping houses. We have a bunch (6) of bankers in the corner. They have been bogarting the couch seating (and the one good power outlet) for about an hour with something that resembles a team meeting…surely something that would be better suited for a conference room, but I can’t blame them for taking the meeting out of what is undoubtedly a cubicle farm, and into the warm, festive, aromatic embrace of Starbucks.

The dude with the table-top baby is here. He always is too – reading the paper, sipping his coffee and chatting with the infant, who is probably about 5 months old now. The kid has now been to Starbucks over 100 times to my calculation and never been able to enjoy a latte.

Two architects behind me are here chatting about building codes and then there are a few sales people typing on their laptops, enjoying a respite from cold-calls and proposal presentations.

My point – none really, except that not one of the people here sounds “Southern.” But it is eclectic. And that is what I like about this area. It is eclectic, accepting, moving, and progressive. It is not the South that my Upstate NY friends picture. I think they would be surprised at how fast the pace is here sometimes--even if the speech is slower. Of course, don’t go down to the DMV, post office or the gas station. There you will find the relaxed “Southern” lifestyle in full glory. And you will hear some excellent Southern accents too. Maybe that is where I am getting my drawl – because it certainly isn’t from the Starbucks.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Holiday Blog

Holiday blog – and ranting at the Starbucks.

Well, I am back from the Hawaii trip I planned on taking over a year ago when I left the Biz. It was a trip of a lifetime and I am glad I was able to go. My family had a great time and I hope that my 4-year old has memories of it.

I am finally – almost a week after getting home – feeling like I am getting back into some sort of routine, which is a weird feeling since I didn’t think I had found a routine here in Charlotte yet. However, I am writing here from my favorite Starbucks in Ballantyne and enjoying the sunshine streaming in the windows. The temperature in a wonderful 73 and the Christmas music is blaring. It seems right somehow and that is how I know that it is. I am home and that is a nice feeling.

Before the vacation I sent in the manuscript for Confessions of an Introvert to the new publisher and told iUniverse not to print any more. I am looking forward to a great year with what is now my “old” book. If I can get my act together I will write the “new” book over the next few months, (and yes, I know I have been saying that now for a while… but I mean it this time). I am no longer to sell Confessions of an Introvert myself, and no new copies are being printed, but I know that as of today, Amazon has a couple copies left, and Brambleberry Barn has several. If you don’t see it on the website, give Kelly Roland a call there and she will hook you up. Brambleberry Barn is super busy right now getting the most amazing holiday gift baskets custom made, but I am sure they will be able to get you a copy of the book if you would like. (Just in time for the holidays!)

Besides getting things in order personally for Christmas, there is not much going on. I hope to travel a bit in the coming weeks to visit friends and family and I do need to write. I went to a holiday party this past week and was able to observe some interesting introvert/extrovert relationship interaction which is great research, and I am hoping to do some more business networking in the coming months as well, which will help me on the business side and well as personally in my new city. (That was an awkward sentence wasn’t it! – glad I have an editor for the book…) It is almost a year since my house in Rochester went on the market and only a couple months until I will have officially lived in Charlotte a year, so I best be getting out and meeting people now. No excuses!

Happy Holidays to all, I look forward to your cards, comments and emails!