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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. – From signing the checks here at WHNT News 19 to signing copies of her latest book, the ride has been magical for Linda Spalla. She describes her life as a Cinderella story.

Sitting in the middle of the main studio at WHNT recently, Linda told me, “I’m just a little country gal from Anniston, Alabama and I’ve always been at the right spot at the right time with the right people and said yes a couple of times at the right time so it’s been a great life, Jerry. It really has been. I’m very blessed.”

And many of our employees were blessed to work with her at WHNT. Linda worked here from 1975 to 2000. She started as a sales secretary.

“I have a rule and that is you need to leave while people are still clapping,” she said. And they were when she retired 25 years later as the president and general manager of WHNT. “You only get to make magic once or twice in your life usually,” she said, “And we made some magic together.”

Linda is still making magic as an author. “People who say to me oh, I can never retire because I don’t know what I would do,” said Spalla. “I always find that statement rather curious because this is the best time of my life and having so much fun and relatively little stress.”

She’s already written three books. “Blessed with good health, have great kids, fantastic grandchildren, a great guy in my life and spending two months in Paris every summer is not bad,” she said with a smile. Her latest book is called “Bernie’s Paris – Travel Stories with Love.”

Bernie is her best friend and travel companion. A mutual friend introduced the couple 12 years ago. “She said to me, you really ought to meet this guy,” she told me. “I’m going to tell him to call you and he did.  The rest is history and that’s all in the book. We talk about that. It’s a fun story.”

What wasn’t fun was when a cat knocked a planter off a window ledge that could have killed her. Oh, and the time Bernie was almost run down by a bus.

“He’s a very deliberate Parisian, pays no attention to the lights,” she said smiling. “He just walks when he’s ready and all of a sudden, the screech of the bus and the bus driver sitting down on the horns so we’ve just had some crazy things.”

Linda’s not sure if there’s another book in her future. “My website says that I`m an emerging southern writer writing captivating stories from the heart,” she told me. “And that`s what I try to do so if the spirit moves me, I might do another one.” If she does, we’ll turn the page on that one for you as well.

Linda’s book is available at the following locations: Shaver’s Books, Lawrens, Sterling Travel, Josie’s at Burritt Museum, the gift shot at the Huntsville Art Museum and Amazon.