Colorful Tarot cards are a great way to sharpen your intuitive skillsWednesdays and Fridays in Wimberley, TX, just got a little more insightful.

Drop in September 10, 12, 17 and/or 19 and read some Tarot with me. All skill levels are welcome. Even if you’ve never touched a deck before, we’ll get you on the road to greater intuitive clarity and confidence.

These are not formal classes set in sequence, so join us as you can. All you’ll have missed is some great camaraderie and a couple of fascinating hours exploring on the edge of what is known.

The cost is $10 per meeting. (Cash only, please.)

Find us at:
Sanctuary in the Village
501 Old Kyle Rd & Blue Hole Ln
Wimberley, TX

Have a deck? Bring it. Need a deck? We’ll have a few you can borrow. See you soon!

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So, maybe you don’t have movie-star good looks. Maybe you don’t drive a luxury car or live in a fashionable part of town. You can still feel like a VIP. All it takes is reservations at Bar Smyth in Dallas, Texas.

Don’t look for a neon sign or sidewalk seating. The entry for Bar Smyth is completely unmarked—part of its mystique. Announce yourself using the small keypad next to a nondescript door and you’ll be buzzed inside.

Old Fashioned cocktailA dim hallway leads you to a narrow, warmly-furnished space that may have you checking the calendar to be sure you haven’t stepped back to a Prohibition-era speakeasy, or a Cold War-era covert rendezvous.

Menus? This place is too cool for menus

Your bartender visits your table with some questions, then disappears to concoct a beverage to appeal to your personal flavor profile. The results are surprising and exquisite.

My visit included two excellent cocktails. The first, shown here, was an Old Fashioned, crafted for me with grapefruit bitters, and tequila instead of bourbon. The second, a perfectly balanced Sazarac. (Hats off to Robert the bartender for choosing America’s oldest-known cocktail for me. I love a good Sazarac.)

Most of the others in our party preferred slightly sweeter drinks. Our bartender called on a variety of fruits, herbs and flowers to delight each of them in turn.

Bar Smyth sounds like fiction, right? For me, it sounded like my fiction—specifically Club Clandestine, in Going Native. Here’s how it breaks down:

Real vs. fictional VIP cocktail lounges

Club Clandestine (from my novel, Going Native)
Bar Smyth (located on Travis Street in Dallas, TX)
Hard-to-spot entryUnmarked entry
Bouncer asks for passwordSecure, locked entrance
Dim stairs lead down to clubDim hallway leads to club
Speakeasy/Cold War spy vibeSpeakeasy/Cold War spy vibe
Unforgettable night of covert, erotic games in the arms of a sexy heroOutstanding cocktails in intimate setting, guaranteed to make you feel special

All told, a remarkable evening. And I confess I’m glad to have friends who can assure me it really happened. Otherwise, I might wonder if, like Club Clandestine, I’d created Bar Smyth out of my own secret imaginings.

Shall I meet you there?

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Turkey Vulture in majestic flight.
Given the chance to be a bird for a day, would you do it? What kind of bird would you be?

Me, I’d be a turkey vulture. Master of the air. I’d ride the thermals for hours on end. My wings would stretch wide and proud, creating a majestic silhouette in the sky.

Finding food, not a problem. I’d have sharp eyes and an olfactory sense so refined, I could find food miles away. My constitution could handle anything and my featherless head would enable me to push in and get all the good stuff without the embarrassing, “Oh, Sally, is that meat in your hair?”

But riding the thermals, that’d be the best. Up in the roaring silence. Wind in my feathers, I’d fly for the joy of it. At day’s end, I’d roost with my pals, all of us together. Maybe sharing our adventures. Maybe sharing silence, knowing our lives are good.

Perhaps I’d travel, not like migration—that seems such hard work. But I’d take my magnificent self to the mountains. Or explore the length of a river.

Chat with the natives.

Sample the local cuisine.

Ride the thermals until I no longer know where I am and, upon realizing this, rediscover myself all over again.

Texas bonus… in the summer, I would keep cool by defecating on my legs. (Not a strategy I’d be willing to try out in human form!)

So how ’bout you? If you dream of taking wing, I’d love to hear how you’d do it.


Photo credit: Tony Hisgett from Birmingham, UK

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It’s a horse year. Ready to giddyup?

On February 7, 2014, in astrology, feng shui, playfulness, by Sally Felt
Adorable ballon ponies become part of the celebration at Sally's local grocery store.

Adventure, action and romance await. Hang on to the reins!

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The alpha male—who wants him?

On January 2, 2014, in relationships, by Sally Felt

A chimp fixes the photographer with an arrogant expression.I follow lots of fellow romance readers on Twitter. Many rhapsodize about “alpha males,” while the very idea of an all-powerful hero sets my teeth on edge.

And then I realized we might not be talking about the same thing.

The alpha hero you can keep, thank you

My old idea of “alpha male”:

  • Is accustomed to being obeyed
  • Interrupts his lessers when they speak (and we’re all his lessers)
  • Considers apologies a sign of weakness
  • Takes control because he “knows what’s best for you”

In other words, a self-righteous jerk. In real life, I prefer to walk away from these types. If they appear in my writing, they’re secondary characters or antagonists, not the hero.

I like a hero who respects other people, even when he disagrees with them. I want him to make an attempt at seeing things from his adversary’s perspective, even if compromise proves impossible.

Do we need alphabetical labels?

Is respect an “alpha” or a “beta” characteristic? What about kindness? Are all nice guys “beta?” If I don’t know the difference, how do I choose romances I’m likely to enjoy reading? How do I tell readers what to expect from my books?

Before my brain explodes with questions, how ‘bout we accept “alpha” as a synonym for “prime,” as in first choice, or ideal. That way, there’s room for every preference.

The alpha hero I love

Here then, is my new idea of “alpha”:

  • Lives his values, leads by example
  • A knowledge seeker
  • Doesn’t give up in the face of setbacks
  • Admits his faults and overcomes his failures
  • Fights to defend, not destroy
  • Courageous
  • Willing to grow and change

I have men like this in my life. I admire and adore them. Small wonder I seek similarly wonderful book boyfriends.

Your list may be different. I respect that. A wonderful thing about the romance genre is its diversity. And if you’re inclined to share, I’d love to hear about the type of hero that wins your heart.


Photo: Tambako the Jaguar

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Photo of Sally's tiny, candlelit bathroom.

My bathroom (only just slightly smaller than actual size)

Bathing by candlelight. I’d forgotten how much I enjoyed it. It’s taken the heat of another Texas summer to bring me back to this simple, sensual pleasure.

Exchanging “get up & go…”

In the winter, I love basking in the morning sunlight that beams through the little window in my shower. It energizes me. When days are shortest, I want as much sun as I can get.

Right now, though, days stretch out in lazy splendor. They bring chlorine-dipped days at the pool, dirt-dusted arms and legs from working in the yard, and skin coated with SPF, insect repellent and plenty of sweat. It’s nice to rinse off in cool water before bed.

…for “get on my glow”

So I venture into my tiny bathroom and forgo the bright bathroom lights in favor of a few candles. Their glow filters through the translucent shower curtain. It’s moody and relaxing and eases me into sweet, summery dreams. Ahhhh. I love this time of year.

Do your habits change to reflect the season? What sensual pleasures are you celebrating?

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Dancing for kibble (aka play pays)

On June 7, 2013, in playfulness, by Sally Felt

sgh-061_1zYou’ve got a list of errands as long as your arm and a limited amount of time to get through it. Sound familiar?

Tempting as it is to become an efficiency drone, there are big benefits to taking a more playful approach. Let me share my most recent proof that it’s true.

Dance party at the Petco

Me and my to-do list entered the Big Box pet store and hauled a bag of premium cat food to the checkout stand. There I surrendered a coupon to the very young sales clerk, a skinny guy with glasses, braces and the slouch so common among teens of low self-esteem. While he did his thing, I said, “This brand always makes me feel like I’m buying Disco’s Greatest Hits, you know?”

At his curious glance, I used my best radio DJ voice. “Solid Gold Katz-N-Flocken!” I cried before executing a brief reprise of one of John Travolta’s classic dance routines.

2956392064_62def7db12The kid cracked up and complimented me before turning back to the register. He announced my total, assuring me it reflected my coupon discount.

My inner pixie asks for more

“Does it include the dancing discount as well?” I asked.

He glanced around, and seeing no sign of his manager, punched in his employee discount. “Now it does,” he said, grinning. And when I left, he stood a little straighter.

The whole exchange took maybe 15 seconds and brightened the day for both of us. Plus, I saved an additional $3.80.

How are you enriching your life with play today?

P.S. Disco lives! (At least at the Petco.)


Photo credit, disco ball: Sarah

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