What happens when two women swap lives?
Soap Opera Star Gloria Hart: After losing her celebrated soap opera role, she winds up crashing her Ferrari Spider and getting stranded in Mooreville, Mississippi. Will America's TV goddess discover the role of her life with handsome rancher Matt Tucker playing the leading man? After all, he's the first man she's kissed off camera in over five years!
Married Mom Jenny Miller: Up to her ears in pies she bakes for her husband's restaurant and the trials of an angst-ridden teenager, she's lost touch with herself. Can her budding friendship with Gloria change that?
With a few margaritas, a memorable road trip and a little help from each other, these women are about to find friendship, love and their own secret goddesses!
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November 05, 2007
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Excerpt from The Secret Goddess Code by Peggy Webb
I have died and gone to Mooreville, Mississippi.
I knew things were bad when that peroxided, collagen-enhanced, nubile nymph Susan Star stole my role as the reigning TV goddess in Love in the Fast Lane, but I didn't know I'd be killed off for real and sent to the backside of nowhere. Good lord, just because a woman turns forty-five shouldn't mean she gets tossed out and consigned to life without long-stemmed roses and Godiva chocolates.
Trying to make sense of things, I close my eyes, but when I open them again I'm staring at the same wide expanse of cloudy sky slashed with a sign that says, Welcome to Mooreville. Plus, I have a lump on my head the size of California. "Is anybody here?"
Expecting Saint Peter to answer, I ease up on my elbow and spot my powder-blue Ferrari Spyder. Or what remains of it. They don't let you take cars to the hereafter, no matter which way you go, so this means I'm not dead.
To some people that would come as a relief, but the mood I'm in, it just makes me mad.
It also makes me remember swerving to miss a cow, then clawing my way out of the airbag in an adrenaline-propelled panic, which explains why I'm in a ditch. My purse is upside down an arm's-length away so I scramble for my cell phone to dial 911. Alas, it's smashed into pieces against a rock. To add insult to injury, the big black clouds that have been hovering overhead let loose a flood that nearly washes me away.
Spotting a little convenience store down the road, I lurch upward intending to walk for help, but a pain rips through my ankle and throws me back down. They shoot horses with broken legs, don't they? It's not enough that my twenty-year career is over: I'm going to get shot or drown in a ditch.
When I left Hollywood and headed to my childhood home in Jackson without even telling my agent, I expected headlines to read, Famous Soap-Opera Actress Disappears. I expected buzz in the biz would be that Gloria Hart had eloped to Paris or moved to a villa in the south of Italy or at the very least was last seen in a Piggly Wiggly filling a cart with Almond Joys and double-chocolate pudding.
Instead I've wrecked my car, maimed my cell phone and crippled myself, and there's not a single reporter around to turn this drama to my advantage. The situation calls for a major pity party.
I'm good at tears. Lord knows, I've had enough practice. After the writers put me in a fiery plane crash that killed off my fictional husband and swiped my fictional memory, I wept the Pacific Ocean on daytime TV and was flooded with sympathy letters from fans.
Now I try to work up a few tears, but all I can see is how ludicrous my situation is: done in by a cow and my crazy urge to drive Mississippi's back roads. I start laughing and can't stop.
Somebody get the net. I've gone completely crazy and sirens signal the men in white are coming to take me away. "Are you all right?"
Oh, my lord. A drop-dead-handsome man in a fireman's uniform is talking to me. Either I bumped my head harder than I thought and am hallucinating, or Mooreville just started looking a whole lot better.
"That depends on how you describe all right." I laugh again, probably teetering on the edge of hysteria, and the man who could be a Playgirl centerfold looks at me as if I'm from another planet. In a way, I guess I am. Hollywood is about as far from Mooreville as you can get. Beyond the man is an honest-to-goodness picket fence. And what looks like a black-and-white cow but just might be a big dog. The one that ran in front of my car and caused me to straddle a light pole.
And there's not a sidewalk in sight.
The hunk kneels over me and pops the blood-pressure cuff on while an older fireman and a paunchy state trooper scurry around my mutilated car.
"I'm Rick Miller, ma'am, and we're going to get you to the hospital over in Tupelo."
Now that makes me mad. My goodness, I'm not that badly injured.
The hunk, who is now checking me for broken bones, is wearing a wedding ring. Now maybe I will cry.
Not that I'm looking for a husband or anything remotely resembling one. But when a big chunk of your life gets ripped away and you don't have another person in this whole world to turn to, suddenly it feels as if you have nothing at all, as if you're teetering on the edge of a cliff in the middle of a deserted jungle screaming for a net, and there's not even a slim chance anybody will hear. It's times like this that make me long to have a good man who will hold me close and say "Everything is going to be all right."
"Listen, Rick, thanks for your offer. I'm a little rattled. It's not every day I run into a light pole. I don't know what I'm going to do about my poor car."
"I'll call Tuck's Tow Service. Jackson Tucker's the best mechanic in this area." He wraps his fireman's jacket around me, then he and the other fireman lift me onto a gurney. "Is there anybody else you want me to call?"