Friday, August 31, 2012

My New Life

by Liv Montgomery from Foul Play at the Fair, A Celebration Bay Mystery by Shelley Freydont

I know what you’re thinking.  How can a successful Manhattan event planner chuck it all to move to a small country town to oversee Harvest Festivals, Breakfasts with Santa and strawberry socials?

Trust me, it wasn’t as hard as you think.

Picture this.  In my old life, I was dressed and riding the elevator down by seven am, every day. I’d leave the key with the doorman for the dog walker and I’d run (yes run) to the corner Starbuck’s in four inch heels. No, I didn’t wear sneakers until I got to work. You never knew what potential client you might meet hailing a cab.

Then I’d work all day with creative geniuses with fragile egos, with clients with money and no patience, or with clients with not so much money and no patience.  It was nerve-wracking, juggling a hundred things at once.

I loved it.  No, really I did.  I was good, in demand. But I wasn’t even thirty and I was on the road to burn out.

Then I saw the ad for event coordinator in a small upstate New York town. I applied and now I’m the newest citizen of Celebration Bay—Where Every Day’s a Holiday.

It is the most family-friendly, holiday-celebrating, welcoming town on earth.  Okay I added that last part, but it’s really a great place to live.  My landladies Miss Ida and Miss Edna Zimmerman take good care of me and the man in my life . . .Whiskey, my rescued Westie terrier; he LOVES it here.

I take Whiskey to work with me.(See above: Whiskey is a dog, not a drink) We walk along the quiet streets to the town green, stop for a pastry at the Apple of My Eye Bakery and pick up my latte from the Buttercup Coffee Exchange. I know it’s a little cute, but it works. Then up Main Street to my office in Town Hall.

My assistant Ted Driscoll, is Mr. Efficiency. I think he’s around sixty, but he’s a little mysterious about his age.  Actually he’s mysterious about everything, which makes him very intriguing.  I don’t pry, though I’d really like to know.

Everyone is really helpful. Well, almost everyone.  There is Janine Tudor.  She was the coordinator before me, but was in way over her head.  The town council fired her, but she blames me for taking her job.  I know.  But I’m telling you, rational argument does not help.  I just try to stay civil and watch my back, (something I was really good at back in Manhattan.)

The only other person in town that rubs me the wrong way, is Charles “Chaz” Bristow, the editor of the Celebration Clarion.  His big occupations are sleeping and fishing.  Sounds about ninety years old, right?  He’s thirty-something with a cover boy face and body straight out of Malibu Surfer. It’s so annoying.

Plus he’s lazy and has an attitude.  But BeBe, my new BFF,  found out that he used to be an investigative reporter for the LA Times before he moved back to take over the paper.  Now, we’ve had a couple of shall we just say “incidents”  where he could have been a big help.  But he refused both times, just said something snarky and went fishing.

Like I said, annoying.

So these are my new peeps. My new home.  Between you and me, I was afraid it might be boring.  Now, I sometimes wish we had a little less excitement.

So next time you’re in upstate New York, we’d love to see you.

Where would you rather live and work?  City or small town?


  1. Yes. Oh, that's not an answer. My favorite plan is to live in a small town with a commuter rail to the nearest big city--best of both worlds.

    This book is a fun read--and don't let anyone think that event planning doesn't take a lot of skill!

  2. Like you, I came from NYC to live and work in a small village, and I love it. But it certainly doesn't lack excitement--and sometimes offers too much.

  3. Celebration Bay would be a great place to air and clean living and murder. Just what a city girl needs to spark up her life. I wouldn't mind the constant events, bringing life to my town, but I certainly could do without the murder.
    The dog is cute, too.
    Ms. Freydont really involves the reader. Can't wait for her next book.

  4. Nice to meet you, Liv! Celebration Bay sounds like a nice place to end up - for you and for readers. Whiskey is mighty cute!

  5. Liv, sounds like Celebration Bay would be a super place. A party every day? Fun, fun, fun! Although you must get tired, right? I mean doesn't that fishing and sleeping sound good at times?

    Enjoy every moment of your new life.

    All my best,

    Charlotte from Providence

  6. I would love to live in a place like Celebration Bay -- wait, I almost do! It sounds just lovely. But I'm most curious about these people who are so mysterious.

    ~ Sophie

  7. Liv says
    Love it here. I already have made friends, People love my dog. You have to call a cab. Actually I'm not even sure we have cabs. I"ll have to check on that.

  8. Hi Liv,

    Looking forward to reading about your adventures in your new town. I wouldn't mind living in a small town as long as I can get to the city quickly.