Many writers like to speak at length about the music playlist they use when they write, different tunes for different moods, and so forth. I thought I should tell you about mine.
As I've mentioned before, we live in a log cabin (with an addition) that was built in 1812 out of big heavy squared-off logs. The bottom floor is stone, built into a bank. This was our hunting cabin/vacation home, but now it's fulltime.
There's a big room upstairs with paneling on the inside instead of bare logs, and one stretch of that, where a doorway was cut through the logs to give access to the addition, has something that lives within the walls, between the paneling and the logs. Well, actually, lots of things live within the walls, if you count the black snakes that come in to check out the mouse population. We don't bother them, and they don't bother us.
Anyway, we think this particular pest is a red squirrel (though we've never seen it). It has a walnut — plenty of black walnut trees around the farm. It's very fond of this walnut. It rolls the walnut all around this one stretch of wall, driving 3 cats, 2 dogs, and 2 humans absolutely nuts (so to speak). Then it gnaws on it. Loudly. At all hours. Where it's nice and warm, out of the snow.
So instead of iTunes, think of me with this constant, subliminal, walnut-rolling-around-inside-wall noise whenever I write. This has been going on for way more than one rodent's lifetime, so it must be passed from mother to daughter, down through the generations.
I just glanced outside and saw three separate black walnuts placed along the 2nd floor porch's banister rails. This is clearly a cache that the squirrel has forgotten about. For now. If it collects a few more, it can release an album.