I’m back from New York, it’s Sunday, the trees are blooming in my yard, and there is basketball on ALL DAY LONG. What is not to like?

I had so much fun in New York, even though it was a TOTAL whirlwind from start to finish. I’ve said here before how I am such a small-town kind of person, so to be in a city like that is like injecting me with about a million cups of coffee and then setting me loose. WHEEEEE! I get so overstimulated I’m like my daughter after eating a cupcake, heavy on the icing. On Thursday, I got to see the huge crowds for the St. Patrick’s Day parade on my way to a great lunch with my editor and publicist. It was also close to Time Warner Center, where there was an Esprit store. Esprit! Holy 1984, Batman! But I went in and the clothes were SO CUTE. Why isn’t there one of these, like, anywhere near me? Then it was off to my agent’s new digs at Writer’s House, out to dinner, and back to the hotel to collapse.

The next morning, I wanted to sleep in, but of course my eyes shot open RIGHT at 5:55am, the exact moment I am sure my daughter began calling for me back here at home. I’d waited SIX MONTHS to have a morning all to myself to sleep as long as I wanted and….I was up. UP! Honestly. So of course I HAD to grab some coffee and walk over to the GMA Studios, where they were just about to shoot an outside cooking segment with Mario Batali. I was too short to see everything—and too Southern to elbow my way up front, as many people on my Twitter feed suggested—but I did get to see Robin, G-Step AND Sam, as well as the back of Mario Batali’s head. He was wearing a purple scrunchie, which kept making me think of that Sex and The City episode where Carrie said no women in NY wear scrunchies. Which may be true. But the chefs do, apparently.

Then, it was onto the subway—where I had to transfer, and ALMOST got totally lost and had to go up on the street to panic-call Susane Colasanti before figuring out I was on the wrong platform—and to the Penguin offices. Went to a GREAT lunch (can you tell I mostly just eat when I’m in New York?) then a meeting where I got to see ALL the cool stuff that is planned for when What Happened to Goodbye is released. And there’s so much of it, I can’t even tell you. I mean, I literally can’t, because they’d probably kill me. But hopefully soon I can fill you in AND I think I’ll be able to put up my tour schedule this week. Oh, and look at the new jacket, which now features some PINK background:

Then I got to eat ANOTHER huge amazing dinner, went to watch the second half of the UNC game at a sports bar before calling it a night. (Thanks to the everyone at Penguin, by the way, but especially Lisa DeGroff, who stayed out and watched the game with me so I didn’t have to cheer alone.)

The next day I was up, out, and home by noon. It’s like cultural whiplash going from a huge city to pasture land in less than three hours, and I mean that in the best way. AHHHHHHH the country. New York, you are wonderful. But I need my bright stars and cows.

Now, I am home for awhile, gearing up for the paperback release of Along for the Ride in early April—with a new cover:

And, while I am doing links, here’s the video I was TRYING to embed via my iPad and failing royally on Friday. I love it especially because it is like a commercial for my hometown, featuring one of my favorite restaurants AND lots of UNC basketball:

Okay, I think that’s all I had to tell you. New York, Mario Batali purple scrunchie…OH! I also had TWO celebrity sightings, which I know I can share with all of you if no one else. First was Terrence Howard, who walked BEHIND me on his way to the bathroom when I was out for a sushi dinner with my agent. And second was Nick Swardson, the actor and comedian, who was at the table RIGHT next to us at lunch. I was trying very hard not to gawk. Am not sure I succeed. So, if you are keeping track—and you know I am—that is THREE famous people I have seen in one week, counting John Edwards at my local CVS here in NC. And, you know, three more than the rest of the year. Pretty much.

Sorry for the insanely long entry. Have a good night, everyone!