By Lisa Maliga
This second edition has been updated and expanded.
It’s 2009. Lisa Hansen is impacted by the great recession and can’t focus on her writing career. She has to make the tough decision to stay in Los Angeles or return to her former Midwestern home. Not having seen her mother in over a decade, she moves back in with her in a suburban semi-retirement community. Confronted with long forgotten memories, Lisa finds it difficult to adjust to life in Nadir. She works a couple of dead end jobs, and meets Gordon, a sexy British bakery owner. An opportunity to freelance for him and work as a writer/photographer at The Factory ensures a better income. But how long will she be confined in a lifestyle that she has long outgrown? “Notes from Nadir” is an alternatively poignant and amusing story of life’s unforeseen journeys, sorrows, and rewards.
Notes from Nadir is approximately 88,000 words/292 pages.
Here is an excerpt from the Mom’s Garden chapter:
Mom definitely had that proverbial green thumb. Even when she lived in a small apartment with only a second story balcony to tame, she managed to fill it every spring with flower pots and flower boxes and the plain cement slab was transformed with her favorite shades of pastels and brighter colored floral bouquets. She loved petunias, especially the striped ones. I was a gawky teen when we moved to that apartment in a large complex filled with bare naked balconies. Mom’s stood out so much since she wrapped the black iron bars with aqua and white webbing like a Longaberger basket. She also covered the concrete slab with a fitted rectangle of golf course green indoor/outdoor carpeting.
In her Hampton Lake home she had a large garden surrounded by a tall wooden fence. She loved her creation and when I noticed it perking up in the warming days, I shared her joy. A winding path had been created from carefully placed white stones. Evergreen bushes covered one side. A few hanging plants contributed lush orange red and bright pink to the corners. Along the wall facing Hampton Lake was a petunia paradise. There were several potted begonias, red and pink geraniums, and even some chives and basil. Mom had comfortable furniture and of course yours truly had to bring it out of the garage and set it up. But I didn’t mind really, it made her happy to be out there. She had a mini storage compartment that held all her gardening gear. She wore her big floppy flowered sunhat, green patterned gloves, and had a garden kneeler, the double foam rubber cushion giving her a few minutes of comfort as she did her gardenly tasks.
My entertainment consisted of the latest Sookie Stackhouse novel [Dead & Gone book #9] and for a snack there was a pint of Ben & Jerry’s strawberry cheesecake ice cream. Unless Mom got all revved up about some project that involved planting more flowers or moving something. If that happened, I knew that book would go unread and my ice cream would turn liquid as I’d be drafted into helping out.
So much time had passed since I last lived with her and had to endure all the bookish interruptions, “Lisa, you’re strong, could you help me dig a hole for the new evergreen.” The old pay me a compliment and get me to work trick. But it was far worse for my uncle whenever he visited as he was kept hopping doing plumbing and electrical repairs. Now, I was able to enjoy my ice cream and cool off in a shady spot while she sat in her chair and rested.
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