April 12, 2013

Winter in April and what I'm reading

It is actually supposed to snow tomorrow.  Snow.  15-20 centimetres.  

In a way, I don’t mind.  I’ll be able to bundle up in my full winter gear and not feel bad about it.   It has been cold for days, but the worst kind of cold, where the weather forecasts have only prepared you for double-digits until the night before.  The forecast giveth, and the forecast taketh away.

I’ve been missing the simplicity and warmth of my black shearling boots.  I never thought I would miss winter boots, which I guess means my careful selection process and expended ($$$) funds were well worth it.  It’s possible that what is making me grumpiest about this changing weather is my general confusion about how to dress to stay warm enough on any given day without the ability to rely on a giant parka. I hate being cold.  It's April, after all.  There isn't supposed to be any more of this: 

 A photo by T. from our knitting weekend

Enough about the weather. 

Well, I wrote all that yesterday.  It has now snowed, stopped, started again, stopped, rained, and it is now a light hail, I think.  Oh well.

Yesterday I finished reading Murakami’s What I Talk About When I Talk About Running.  A super-quick and easy read that I enjoyed…perfect for the subway.  It didn’t really light a fire under me to start running, as it isn’t really that kind of book (though I sort of hoped it would be).  I can really only relate to that kind of striving when it comes to writing, or the occasional personal pet project.

I also recently finished reading Diana Athill’s Midsummer Night in the Workhouse.  I wish I had put down my thoughts about this collection right away, but it probably enough to say that I really enjoyed it.  The style and the social mores are very of the era (I don’t know this for a fact, but I have a feeling most of these were written many years ago), but the intellect and observation of the writer are profound.  It reminded me of the power of well-balanced explanation in fiction.  Writers are so frequently exhorted to “Show, Don’t Tell,” but there is plenty to be said for telling when it is artfully done and when what is being communicated is complex and unique.

Right now I’m reading The Dinner by Herman Koch, which, so far, is the perfect follow-up to Athill.

This weekend I really need to start preparing for a few upcoming events, even though just thinking about them makes me nervous.  And nervousness = avoidance mode.  Wish me luck.

To spite the weather, here's a cheery, spring-y photo of some yellow in the kitchen, including some beautiful tulips Z. gave me at my launch, which lasted and lasted.

Hope everyone is staying safe and warm with all this sleet and ice and snow all over!


Pat Webster said...

Loved the photo on the swing, and the colour of the tulips cheered me by long distance. I'm reading Zadie Smith's On Beauty. Not really into it yet but finding it a bit of a slog.

saleema said...

I'm glad the tulips spread the warmth further than our kitchen!

Have you finished On Beauty? I read it while I was at Yaddo and remember liking it, but at the moment I can't remember anything about it...