a novel by JOHN GRABOWSKI

Replay: Let’s get away from it all, shall we?

I ran this a couple years ago when my blog was new, and in these cold, wintry months the thoughts seem about as relevant as ever, so here it is again:

Solitude! In my novel, Welsey Shaw, my harried and harassed actress, contemplates going to live in a small cabin deep in the woods to escape the craziness of celebrity and the paparazzi. No electricity, no Internet (but TV and DVDs are okay), no phone.  No people.  Books, magazines, tranquility, nature.  The idea isn’t new: Henry David Thoreau tried it a century and a half ago.  Welsey says her cabin would have to be on one floor and would have to have a porch and a porch swing.  And that swing had better squeak!  Also, fireplaces are mandatory.  Cozy is important in the woods.

She lists the things she’d take with her:  Her iPod.  “Sgt. Pepper.  Keep The Faith.  Christina Aguilera.  All my magazines.  One pair of jeans, one pair of cutoffs, and one or two sweatshirts and T-shirts.  Flip-flops.  Sunglasses.  My hair clip and brush.  Shampoo.  Conditioner.  Beer.  Lip gloss.  Deodorant…One second thought, who cares about deodorant?  I’m going to be alone.  Tampons.  Calamine lotion.  Orangina.  Stolichnaya.  Blue Mountain Peaberry Whole Bean.  A shovel and salt for winter snows.  Logs for the fireplace.  What else?”

Of course my own needs would be somewhat different.  I’d have to have the largest-capacity iPod (or maybe a couple) filled with as many of my CDs as I could fit.  Earphones.  Another pair of earphones as backup.  All my books–that’s a good many–though I no longer read many magazines.  I’d need my computer, and yes, I would have to have a wi-fi connection, though I know that’s really against the spirit of leaving it all behind.  Hank would not approve.

A good bed.  My digital camera.   Clothes, though not many and nothing fancy.  Good shoes.  Toiletries.  Band-Aids.  My deck of TV Mystery Cards.  What am I forgetting?

What about you?  What would you bring along to your secret house in the woods?  What couldn’t you live without?   What would you be more than happy to leave behind? Post your list here and let’s compare notes.

 

10 responses

  1. Maria

    OMG! I could not live without my books. Most particularly my historical fiction. A few “classics”. Chick lit. I guess my Ipod but would prefer a radio station that played all my favorite songs one after the other :)

    Ummm, my laptop but with no internet connection so I could digi scrap. My Philosophy body wash for baths. My favorite jeans and “lucky” sweater. My camera. Probably my dog, Jack…I am in love with my dog and I never used to be a dog person.

    Some good cheese. Vodka & cranberry juice with lots of ice. Comfy pillows.

    Ahhhhh….thanks for making me think of it….

    Like

    August 4, 2010 at 2:30 pm

  2. I liked the thought of the camera and was going to add that to Welsey’s own list, but it dawned on me she has a BlackBerry and those have built-in cameras, right?

    But *I* don’t so I’ll add it to my own list. Thx!

    Like

    August 4, 2010 at 2:45 pm

  3. Maureen Owen

    I’ve had this fantasy before but I think I, and most people really, would get bored in a week. Hey, might THAT be an idea for a novel/screenplay/whatever? Careful when you wish for something.

    Like

    August 4, 2010 at 6:02 pm

    • Maria

      @ John…yes most BBs have a built in camera but I like playing with settings, flash or no, etc.

      @Maureen…oooohhh that’s interesting. As a busy subruban mom of two teens, I keep saying out loud “I need a week with nothing to do…” but I wonder if after a few days I would be stir crazy. Hmmm…definitely a case of be careful what you wish for and an interesting thought.

      Like

      August 5, 2010 at 12:26 pm

  4. Maureen Owen

    I am a “type A” person so maybe it’s me. I’ve founded and sold two companies before I was 35 and I can’t stand downtime. In fact figuring out what I want to do next has been the biggest issue facing me lately. Maybe I’ll be ready for the “getaway” some day, but not yet.

    Like

    August 5, 2010 at 1:28 pm

  5. Mo: Travel. That’s what I’d do.

    Like

    August 5, 2010 at 1:39 pm

  6. Dana

    I may have a little trouble arranging what I want to take with me, since the first thing would be my Husband. Then I have a list of classics I’ve never properly paid attention to, although I may or may not have officially read them. I’d take what I already have on the shelves, and then an ereader so I have access to more if I need it. Music? Don’t really “need it” but a well filled iPod with Haydn, Beethoven and Xenakis would probably take care of things. Since one of my big pleasures is cooking and thinking about food I’m hoping my cabin is near a farmer’s market.

    Like

    August 5, 2010 at 2:05 pm

  7. No clothes?

    Like

    August 5, 2010 at 2:41 pm

  8. Susie Sr

    I would have to take my dog and cats. I’d need books – lots of ’em. My ipod. A good pair of hiking shoes. My cameras. My laptop. Candles. (I lived in the woods. We lost power a LOT.) Hammock. My favorite fuzzy blanket. And my currently neglected moleskine journal. I bet it misses me as much as I miss it.

    Like

    August 10, 2010 at 6:44 am

  9. So you have a moleskin journal too eh?

    I used to use mine like crazy till I bought a netbook computer (< 3 lbs.), which I now take everywhere.

    Like

    August 10, 2010 at 11:05 am

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