HazMat Holiday features my recurring short story characters Charles and Tony. Charles is a dignified gentleman who loves his career as a chemist. He recently began a relationship with a wheelchair bound art museum docent from Israel, who introduces Charles to Hanukkah.
Tony is a college student / laboratory intern. He aspires to be hip. Thanks to my middle granddaughter for correcting my flawed Boomer attempts at slang. She enabled Tony to grasp for coolness in the midst of his nerdiness.
Charles insists on completing a vitally important lab test and report, causing him and Tony to be stranded at the factory during a blizzard.
The story was inspired by my experiences working in a manufacturing facility for over twenty years. I hope you find a copy at your local bookstore or newsstand. You can also subscribe to the electronic version of the magazine. There are over a dozen great short stories by the mystery genre's finest authors.
Now to the "bruising fall" statement. Not a literal fall. The season. The day job workload, fiction deadlines, and my general workaholic tendencies wore me down as the year stumbled toward its end. My husband and I took a long weekend by ourselves over Thanksgiving. On Turkey Day, I could not get out of bed. A bout of flu knocked me down for two solid weeks. And then he got sick.
In the midst of this misery. a tooth abscessed. I had emergency oral surgery to have it removed. The sad little tooth could not be saved. I have been without tooth for almost two weeks. Today I received my temporary tooth. More dental work is in my future due to horrible family genetics in that department.
I can say that all I wanted for Christmas was my tooth (it's a few weeks late for Hanukkah), and I received it. Then Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine arrived. Maybe this year will end on a high note after all.