#AuthorInterview: Idaho Welcome

In a few weeks, I will have been resident in Boise, Idaho for fifteen months. It seems that classes me as an Idaho author and I may follow Ernest Hemingway‘s example and spend the rest of my life here, exploring this beautiful area.

Anyway, the reason for this post is to highlight another Idaho author’s website – Jeri Walker’s Word Bank – where I was honoured to be the final author in her series of interviews with Idaho authors.

Jeri opens by saying, “Turns out Roland Clarke and I have being lackluster riders who love horses dearly in common…”

[Now read on for more on writing and Idaho.]

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Erratic Schedule

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This post is an apology for my failings in the weeks and months ahead.

You’ve been warned.

I’ve even got some sneaky excuses that might even be genuine.

First, I have to warn you that my posts will appear erratically. I will attempt some kind of weekly post, but no wild promises lile, “I will post something every Tuesday”. Attempt can mean that nothing will appear.

There will be a few guest posts, like this Friday’s post from Kristina Stanley, whose novel “Blaze” I reviewed recently. Her latest book, “Avalanche”, is released on Saturday.

And there will be the intermittent book reviews, like the one that I should write for my current read, the “Dying for a Living” Box set, by Kory M. Shrum. It feels like a slower read than normal as the set has three books, and I know that there are two more out there. Will I get that far?

Finally, I will try to write my monthly IWSG posts, although that may be a fail come October. That’s because of September 20th.

QM2For those that don’t know, that is the date when we embark on the QM2 and head for the USA, and the next stage in our life-adventure. Yes, we are selling our home in Harlech, North Wales, and by the end of September should be in our new home in Boise, Idaho. There we will have my wife’s family to support us. Bliss.

Although the IWSG post for October is on Wednesday 5th, our computers will still be in a container between Wales and Idaho. In fact, our possessions may not arrive until sometime in November. Okay, we have a small HP Stream notebook for travel, but I’m still adapting to it.

The HP Stream will get its second outing next week, when we head to London for my interview with US Immigration on Wednesday June 29th. Checking emails is probably the most that I will achieve, but don’t expect any comments on your blogs or here.

In fact, with all the preparations prior to the move, I’m already commenting less, visiting fewer blogs, even writing less. That is likely to become the norm as time sails on. Cruising on the QM2 will be a kind of luxury, but connecting with the cyber-world will be off the menu. Just seven days pampering ourselves perhaps. As for the dogs, they travel first class, with their own cabin/kennel, steward, bedtime biscuits, poop deck, designer jackets, and more.

queenmaryNot looking forward to the road trip though. Getting from New York to Boise will be a challenge for all of us. At least, Juanita’s son Jason will be driving across to collect us.

Anyway, by October – maybe November – there will be a large backlog to catch up. Or should that be a Backblog?

I’ve deliberately evaded any reference to aggravating health issues, but they seem to be growing. The niggling bladder, the stabbing spasms, rebellious limbs, the depression, the exhaustion, and the frustration never go away. Sometimes I can escape into another world, either one of my own creation, or a book I’m reading, or a game that takes me to a ‘a galaxy far, far away’. But never for long. Too soon I get interrupted by the MaelStrom or MonSter.

I’m praying that a change of climate, from the dampness of Wales to the dry warmth of Idaho, will be the healing touch; along with the loving support of family.

Hopefully, by December and the holiday season normal service will be resumed.

 

 

Will I clear the medical hurdle?

Well the US emigration adventure is moving forward. On August 11th, 36 days after applying, I got the approval letter from the US Embassy, which allows me to proceed to the next step of the visa process.

Then another eleven days later, on Saturday August 22nd, I received the crucial LND number that allows me to fix a date for my medical examination – probably in late September. If that goes well, and I pass muster, then the final step will be the interview at the US Embassy in London.

This all presumes that we can fix the medical date for late September. The medical is only valid for six months, but most of those are winter months when it could be hard to move the animals to the US – they can’t fly if it is too cold or too hot. Without a house, moving is near impossible. And my brother holds the purse strings, so everything is on hold until he gives the go-ahead, which could be next year.

However, there is a more immediate concern. Ironically, my MS shouldn’t be the problem, except the stress on hyper-drive. I have all the relevant documents from my doctor and health experts – the local practise put all my records on a disc. These go back quite a few years, well before I was diagnosed in 2000. Although I will have to sign up for medical insurance in the US, having a disease like MS is not a ‘fail’ as such. And once I ensure that I am fully up-to-date with my vaccinations, then there shouldn’t be a problem – I hope.

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So what’s the problem? Why the hurdle?

The examination is at Knightsbridge in London, a six and a half hour drive from Harlech for us. I no longer drive. Juanita doesn’t have a full UK licence so we can’t use the motorways. And like many people, she doesn’t want to drive in London. Even though I’ve lived there and driven extensively in the capital, I totally sympathise. It’s a stressful task. So we’ll be looking for some form of chauffeur… well a kind friend.

Incontinence is a problem already solved, and I’m prepared for the exhaustion, but then there is my car sickness, which had been banished for numerous decades, but that problem has now re-turned in all its childhood nastiness. (See “The Candle”.) Maybe my worsening MS might be at the root of the sickness. When we moved up here in February 2014, I had no severe sickness, even though it was an eight hour journey. However, when the Red Cross drove me to Bangor Hospital, I felt terrible. Maybe the same pills that I took for the 2014 move will work for the trek to London.

Let’s hope they do. Otherwise, I’ll be the wrong colour when I see the US doctor… and the US Embassy official a few weeks later.

Should these be called hurdles or fences? What else looms? Beyond the house purchase and sale, I see a huge water jump. That’s massive – and another post. Where do you think that jump lies?

(Source: ithoroughbred)

(Source: ithoroughbred)