“Writing and reading is to me synonymous with existing.”
Several years ago rambling through Paris, I found myself at 27 rue de Fleurus enroute to Luxembourg Gardens. It was one of those summer days where the weather was too hot to cover any mileage and I was thankful for the shade and respite the storied building provided.
Last Saturday, I hosted a group of women inspired by literature, reading and how the written word defines perspective. We discussed Colson Whitehead’s Underground Railroad & marveled at the protagonist’s unwavering courage. Asking ourselves over and over, Could we ever be that strong?
Upon leaving, one of my guests named our evening the Book Salon. I smiled, recalling my afternoon in Paris, and the legendary Gertrude Stein.
While the New York Times drags me away from my reading, it’s a habit I cannot give up. I’m not addicted to the day-old news, but rather to the layers of crispy grey underneath where one can discover a travel section completely dedicated to bookstores, a Sunday magazine featuring nothing other than literature, or a novel review splashed across the front page of the Arts. For me, I revisit being a girl in my favorite candy shop every evening with a cup of hot tea.
Pedaling against the brisk tailwind of December’s decadence and folly, this is the month of resolutions. I’m not one for life-altering pledges at the toll of a midnight bell, but this year I took a long look at my schedule and determined if I’m going to write the ending to my current manuscript, I need to free up minutes.
So my coveted New York Times is staying, as are the armloads of fantastic books I’ve gathered from several indie bookstores highlighted in the December 11th edition – but, productivity’s sinister rival, social media, is leaving. Honestly, I’m not at all sad to see it go. I feel liberated already and it’s only the first week of January. Happy New Year!
For some, Thanksgiving is about the turkey, family or an NFL game, but for me, it’s something altogether more sentimental.
Christmas is a season, is it not? Depending on where you live the carols have been playing for months and the air may be laced with an arctic chill. I’m not sure if it’s the black Friday frenzy or the post-meal coma that solidifies Thanksgiving night as the official calm before the holiday storm. I behold the last moments of serenity, which departs hours later until January, snuggled up with my family watching the Griswold’s annual debauchery. Dare I admit, we’ve all lived it in one form or another. You can concede, I won’t tell. So sit back, be thankful and enjoy. You can worry about decorating the Christmas tree in the morning.
“Dad that thing will never fit in our yard.”
“It’s not going in our yard Russ, it’s going in our living room.”
It’s the angle of the sun I always notice first. When I was a child, it was the maples and the fire that would color their tips in the weeks following Labor Day. Summer still warmed the afternoons, but the cool of the evening haunted the morning air. We lingered on threshold of change walking to the first day of school, dreaming of all things apple & pumpkin. It was a time to file away the memories of lazy, explorative days and return to work.
Today, it’s pulling out the nearly complete manuscript I shelved last May and giving a voice to the story waiting patiently to be told.
I live where the sun always shines. Rain is a rare and precious gift. A celebration of sorts when life slows down and we hibernate – if only for a day. I grew up in a place quite the opposite. You could count the moments you saw the sun on one hand and summer meant the clouds were merely a lighter shade of gray. I often miss the haze and the cozy, dusky spaces that beg for you to curl up with a good book.