Hello, I hope everyone is having a wonderful Saturday.
Today when I awoke, I was pleased to realize that not only is it Sunny and just slightly cooler outside, but my dog was in a good mood. For you out there that have fur babies, let me take a moment to tell you about my dog, Magaha.
Magaha was a rescue dog. We took our Peek a poo up to get her shots, we being myself and my daughter, Macy. When we were just finishing up our visit, one of the techs came by the room holding my little friend. He was 8 weeks old, and had the most adorable little pointed face. My heart lurched in my chest as I heard that he and his siblings had been abandoned at a local daycare center. My daughter looked at me with these EYES! You have no idea how persuasive she can be with them!!!
So, I left the vet office with 5 dogs. My Peek a Poo Molly, and Magaha and his 2 sisters and 1 brother.
We found homes for the other dogs, and Molly passed away…but Magaha and I have been together for quite some time now.
The reason I’m telling you about him today, is because I am going to make him a star!
My next hero, Joe Lewis, is going to have a dog. His name I’ve yet to decide, but I very well may just use the name of my fur baby. I think Magaha would like that.
As to the SNEAK PEEK part of the title, okay, Here it is…
Book Two of the Festival Series is “No Strings”. It’s Nikki’s story.
If you don’t know who Nikki is, then you need to read my book. (It would make things so much easier!!) But I will press on and assume you have read “Love Never Ends,” and now you’re just so excited you can’t wait to hear what happens to Larson’s sister…Nikki.
(from Chapter One of “No Strings…Book Two of the Festival Series)
After a refreshing shower, Nikki changed into the base outfit she’d need for the show that evening. Black satin pants and a red tank top. When she was through with sound check, before she actually took the stage later, she’d pull either a black or white silk shirt. Strap on some heels, and she was ready to rock away the night she decided, giving her hair a final flick. She took a moment to study her reflection in the hotel bathroom mirror. Her hair was usually kept rather short, but her trips out to the west coast to assist one of her client’s with their first music video had her skipping the customary salon treatment. Her hair hung just below her shoulders, easy to toss, and still manageable with the late summer heat. Her eyes were dark, and usually sparkled, especially when she was amused. Not bad for mid-thirties, she concluded, giving her flat stomach a loving pat. Pilates and yoga were her latest kick in the health craze. She knew she was lucky, and maybe she did live a little ‘younger‘ as her mother liked to say. But time had been good to her, and success was something that just kind of stuck.
She walked out of the bathroom area, clicking off the light as she moved, and dug her cell phone out of her purse and thumbed down the names in her list of contacts looking for Richard. She thought for the hundredth time she should put him on speed dial, but always decided against it. Finding the number she tapped the phone initiating the call. He answered almost immediately, and Nikki could almost see him wearing that Bluetooth headset he loved so much.
“Hey hey Nikki Girl, you settled in?”
“Yes, Darling, nice digs by the way. So where are you…and when is sound check?”
“Driving that way, and sound check is at the Starlight at 5. Should be a light crowd then, and hopefully we won’t have too many changes to go through before set time at 9. You rest your pipes and I’ll meet you there. After we can get a quick bite and a gab fest. I’m dying to hear about your latest adventures.”
“Looking forward to it Rick, can’t wait.”
Nikki ended the call and stood in front of the window that overlooked the little alpine village. She could see the Starlight from her window, mid-day people walked around with bags and packages. The air was turning a bit cool in the early evenings, as August was upon them, but there were still people in bathing trunks carrying their rubber rafts and inflatable tubes for tubing the Chattahoochee River. It was one of the things families came to Helen to do.
She spied a glance at the clock on the table next to the bed. It was only 2 so she could easily lay down for a few hours and relax, if it was her nature.
Instead she picked up her laptop bag and within moments had herself propped up on the bed against pillows, checking her messages. Nothing of interest caught her attention, neither on her email account or her Facebook page.
Nikki Evans Promotions was her baby, started years ago because she graduated from Clemson University with a marketing degree, one of her few sensible accomplishments, and wanted to use her degree to do something fun. She found that her love of music gave her a special insight to the various start-up bands she came into contact with, and used those abilities, and her new-found knowledge of marketing and promotion to make them famous. People loved her vivacious attitude toward life, and even though it was her clients that most often found the spotlight, she managed to eke out a bit of the limelight for herself from time to time.
It was how she wound up in Helen, Georgia, in that end of summer time, just before the hectic days of Oktoberfest were about to start. Her long-time friend and musician Richard Barrington’s band was down a female singer. He called, and she hopped in her car and drove non – stop down from her last job in Nashville. Singing for the weekend with her friend was almost like a vacation to Nikki, and after the last few months of non stop travel, a vacation was just what the doctor ordered.
A few hours later Nikki was seated on a stool behind a keyboard, adjusting the sound in her ears with her foot. She loved the ear buds, and the way they gave her the sounds of just the instruments she wanted. She would sing melody most often, or sometimes harmonize with Richard. It seemed she knew every song the man ever wrote, even the newer stuff.
Richard sat on his own stool, center stage. His turtle shelled acoustic guitar astride his lap, moaning out the last few chords of “Strange Love,” a song he’d written back years before. Nikki filled in the base line on her keyboard, adding a flourish to the ending, just to see how it sounded. His cowboy hat bobbed up and down enthusiastically at the rift, and Nikki made a mental note to include it when they played the song later that night.
“Got everything you need girlie girl??”
“Sounds good,” Nikki said into the microphone, then turned her glance toward Terry, who always manned the sound board in the back of the room. “Terry, how does it sound out there?”
“Marvelous,” he murmured, making a few notes on his ever-present clipboard. He took his earphones off and held up his hand in a thumb’s up mannerism.
“That’s a wrap then boys,” Richard said, easing himself away from the microphone stand and putting the guitar in it’s holder by his stool.
Dwayne Hargrove, the drummer jumped down and went to the corner quickly where Richard’s chair was folded up against the wall. He brought it up to Richard, setting the locks on the wheels, while the singer shifted his weight from the stool to the arms of the wheelchair. Swiftly he swung himself down into the seat of the chair, and turned quickly on the stage to face Nikki with his teeth blazing white in a smile. “Like you never left me,” he said to her, half-teasing, half serious, a testament to her ability.
“Thank you darling,” she said, smiling as she pulled the ear buds out of her ears, disconnecting the wire from the sound feed. She draped the earphones around her neck, like a scarf and bent to give him another hug. She held on to the warmth of her friend for a moment, then started toward the door that led to the deck outside. “I’m going out for some air, and whatever else I can find, see you in a bit?”
“Absolutely,” he returned, gliding his way off the stage toward the bar.