In Salida yesterday, when I was waiting for the concrete truck to arrive for the Annex cellar-wall pour, I ducked into neighboring Book Haven bookstore to get out of a light rain. While scanning the titles on the shelves, I noticed Lawrence Durrell’s Justine, which I have never read, and had a look inside. When I got home last eve, I opened the Writer’s Chronicle May/Summer 2014 edition, which had just arrived in the mail, to find an article about Durrell by Linda Lappin. Had I not looked at one of his books earlier in the day, I might not have turned immediately to the cover story, “Books and Islands: On Reading Lawrence Durrell in Greece.” Because I am exploring the role that both Elika and Salida have played and will continue to play in my life, the following paragraph held particular meaning for me:
“Traveling is, [Lawrence Durrell] suggests, ‘a science of intuitions’ vital to the artist ‘who is always looking for nourishing soils in which to put down roots and create.’ We are all looking for our ‘correspondences,’ he states, for a personal landscape ‘where you suddenly feel bounding with ideas’*—a place where landscape and imagination merge to make new worlds and new stories. In his early phase of his writing career, his personal landscape of correspondences was the Greek island of Corfu.” [Lappin, p. 36]
I look forward to sharing with you the stories that will emerge from the river-rock-studded substrate upon which I am building a life in Salida.
*Lawrence Durrell, “Landscape and Character,” Spirit of Place: Letters & Essays on Travel, (London: Faber and Faber, 1971), p. 160.