But as other people have pointed out, in the middle of the bad, there are always signs that there's good out there too. People who are risking their health and safety to ensure it for others. People reaching out to offer what they can even if it doesn't seem like enough.
Humanity still exists.
People do not inherently suck.
I will take the cockeyed optimist label for those beliefs. Happily. So there. :)
And then I will point you at a happier, cool thing.
I didn't know about the Weekend of Legend until this week. Seems I've missed it a few times so far, but not this time, oh no! This time, I'm sharing it with you.
I have met or at the very least corresponded with many of the writers participating this time around. They're all extremely talented, and clever and ...well. Suffice it to say that I wouldn't be spreading the word about the weekend, if I didn't think it sounded like a lot of fun and a great way to possibly score some free stuff from writers you should really be reading.
I will not be participating as I'm still in recovery mode, and still editing rather than writing new words. Perhaps next time around.
But if you'd like a few more words from me, well, I'll leave them below.
Happy Friday! Have a good weekend. Go find some fun!
My first time at the Market also meant my first time being seen there. I didn't know whether to be flattered or worried that heads swiveled, fingers pointed and eyes widened on all sides as I followed Vi. People leaned their heads together and whispered, all the while watching me. It felt almost like being famous must, I imagined, with strangers thinking they know you at a glance. In some cases here, though, I wouldn't have been surprised to learn that the gawkers actually could learn my secrets just by studying me. There were real gypsies at the Gypsy Market, and they had ways of knowing things.
I didn't imagine the crowded street opening up before us, though. Vi kept on and people got out of her way. Maybe they were just avoiding me. Maybe they feared crossing in front of a the faerie On A Mission. Hard to tell. I saw one big man, dark tattoos drawn over his cheekbones and gold dripping from several holes on both ears, step past the awning of his tent, expression thunderous and angry. The woman beside him, every bit as exotic but far less threatening, stopped him by lifting her hand, knuckles bouncing off his chest in a painless thump. He stopped but glared. She gave me a slight nod. A shiver chased all the way down my spine.
And then I nearly collided with Vi, who'd stopped abruptly. I looked at her, then beyond her. I fought to keep my mouth from falling open again.
Fanned out before me were the biggest tents yet. They lined the back wall of an angled cul-de-sac, the end of this particular pathway through the marketplace. The tent flaps were all open, revealing dark and lush decorations inside. Some of them were, yes, typically gypsy, if there was such a thing. Ornately patterned rugs, crystal balls, dim lighting reflected in the occasional glint of dozens of crystals. Candle light flickered over an earring here, a mirror there. And none of them looked at me, at us. No one stirred or looked surprised and yet I knew for certain that every single one of them knew we'd arrived.
"What is this, Vi?" I pitched my voice low. I didn't know what exactly we'd wandered into, but I knew it demanded caution and respect. "Where are we?"
She smiled up at me over her shoulder. "Don't know," she answered, "but isn't it great?"