Saturday, February 5, 2011

More of the Same

Several inches of fresh snow fell last night, so I went out to take my obligatory standard shot. I realized something was wrong with this picture -- the driveway across the street had not been shoveled and there were a couple of sets of tire tracks, like someone had left and come back. I wondered what was wrong. Ben got out of bed a little later and reported that he had seen an ambulance at their house at 10:40 last night. So, apparently something was wrong.

The other customary shot, hose buried long ago, basketball gone and if this keeps up, the bushes will be lost from sight. Snow is forecast for nearly every day next week. It's amazing and beautiful. The kids will be in school until the fourth of July at this rate. Actually, they build six makeup snow days into the school calendar and anything beyond that gets decided at the state level.

Icicles are forming at the corner of the house -- I bet they'll be much bigger tomorrow. In Rochester, NY, icicles reached clear to the ground.
I was relieved to see someone clearing the drive a little later this morning. He'll have a difficult job of it unless he just lets the sun melt the remaining layer of ice. Usually she shovels the drive; this morning it is he -- I hope she is OK.

My knee went "out" again yesterday for the third time this year. I can feel the need for surgery drawing very near. Logistically, I have no idea how I'm going to get through it. Steve and Julia will take care of the kids, I can board the dogs, but I'm going to need a lot of care for a while. As I understand it, the recovery and rehab is a pretty long process and I just don't know what to do.

I'm going to try to keep track of the books I read this year, so I think I'll list them here with a one or two word review. I'm reading most of them on Kindle -- I find it very convenient and I love being able to get classics for free, so I'm going to try to read one freeby for every book I purchase. I'm reading the "Outlander" series and plan to alternate with a Dickens title.

January's books (Titles in italics instead of underlined because blogger doesn't support underlining as far as I know):

  1. Shelters of Stone by Jean Auel -- terrible, poor writing, no plot and tedious. I've read a few others in this series and found them mildly entertaining. Not so with this.
  2. Echoes by Maeve Binchy -- again a disappointing story in a series I've enjoyed as mindless escape reading.
  3. Outlander by Diana Gabaldon -- many (young) people have told me I HAD TO READ THIS. I was also advised it was best as an audio book because of the lovely voice and accent of the reader. I had never listened to an entire audio book, so I had reservations. My friends were right. It was lovely to hear the Scottish brogue and the Gaelic words pronounced. I did have difficult time staying focused since my inclination is to tune out due to years of exposure to teenagers' music and due to my hearing loss. The story alternates between sex, violence, and unlikely coincidences with time travel thrown in for good measure. Yet, Ms Gabaldon is a good writer -- knows how to keep the reader/listener engaged (sex!) and how to write coherent pleasing sentences, paragraphs, and chapters.
  4. Voyager by Diana Gabaldon -- more Outlander, still entertaining.
  5. Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens -- the first of my free Kindle titles. This was my third reading of this story -- the first was in tenth grade (1954). Parts of it I remembered clearly and parts seemed like an entirely different story. It was an interesting contrast to the Outlander stories, and yet somehow not so entirely different. Complicated relationships, historical backdrop, improbably coincidences, blood and gore, etc. And under it all, Dickens makes fun of timeless foibles of mankind linking him more to Mark Twain than to Diana Gabaldon.

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