The fire burns, as JT prepares for lift-off.

Ms. Holland!

As a matter of fact, I’ll be heading east this Thursday as well! I take it you’re flying, though? I’ll be hightailing it to Florida on the bus to capture a little bit of the country with my camera, which of course you and the rest of the JT support base will stay in touch with through lots of pictures and writing on the site throughout the week.

I’m glad you like the new book reviews section. And get this: reviews are going to be focused primarily on books from and about L.A.! For one, it’ll strengthen JT’s emphasis on all things Los Angeles., and for another, it’ll help me strengthen my connection to more of the literary arts scene out here, which yours truly is slowly but surely delving further into.

I haven’t read the books you’ve mentioned, but I have been onto some fun non-fiction lately. Apart from just finishing Christina’s book (which I think you should totally go out and get for your trip), I’m also currently finishing another one called My Mysterious Son by Dick Russell. I met ‘D.R.’ a couple of months back at a writing circle, and he also gave me a copy of his book. Like the narrative itself, reading My Mysterious Son is a long but also fulfilling journey about a father and his son as they struggle to look past each other’s radical differences.

And ah! I’ve just got to tell you how I found these writing circles, by the way. I think you’ll love the story! Most people do. But, another time.

As for fiction, I also just re-read Always Running by Luis J. Rodriguez. It’s a gripping tale, but I’m actually not sure if you’d like it. At times it can be very graphic and disheartening, but it’s an important testament to gang life and culture in Los Angeles during the 1970s. Nonetheless, there’s more to it than that, but I’ll have to save that story for another time as well!

As I mentioned before, there are so many opportunities coming up in L.A. these days that I almost don’t want to leave, even if it’s just for a week-and-a-half! At the same time, however, I’m ready to hit the road once again to discover another part of myself elsewhere. The only thing I’m dreading? Miami’s heat and humidity!

Seriously, I can’t stand the weather on the East coast or anywhere near it. Even now, I can still remember going to New York during the summer of 2010 and thinking to myself: New York stinks!

The thing is, as I walked through the streets of Manhattan, trash bags were laid out all through the sidewalks. This wouldn’t have been so bad in and of itself, but the hot and humid skies beamed down on the bags and just amplified the stench of whatever was inside, making the big apple feel more like the big rotten apple, if I do say so myself!

Of course, I know it’s your hometown and all, and I’m grateful for that, but really, who goes to New York nowadays anyway, and why? You’re coming back, right?! WHEN?!

I love you.

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