Where last week was a blur

I often hear on blogs that people are busy. They mention that they were just running around from one task to another and had no time for anything. I always wonder, what were they doing?

Well, this week was like that for me. I was running around like a headless chicken jumping from one task to another. Now, while this blog is not about personal details, I will give you a list of what it is that kept me so busy.

At my day job, I work with the public. They are lovely people but they are always needy. And it’s urgent and it’s the most important thing in the world and they needed it yesterday. While there are some people who have steeled themselves against those sad eyes and heartfelt pleas, I seem to believe everything they tell me….so, I end up trying to fix all their issues on top of the work I’m supposed to be doing.

At home, our house is giving us issues. We are in the process of selling and moving…and our well has decided to act up. Ours decided to give us water…with e-coli. One panic-stricken water test later, we’re tossing bleach into our pipes and well, wondering if we’re going to die. Believe it or not, the bleach didn’t seem to kill whatever was bothering our water, so we moved onto chlorine. And threw those tabs down the drains and the well for good measure.

The issue with that is that, while the chlorine is doing its job, we can’t use the water…

Fun week, right?

Still, check out this little guy. How adorable is that?

 

 

Awww! My goodness

Just adorable!

He’s just so blissfully happy with his mom and the kisses he’s getting. Isn’t it just lovely?

And this one is a sea otter that gets adopted! Aww!

 

A quiet little town

I have mentioned that we’ve sold our house. It’s true. There’s a bright red sign on it shouting out to the world that it’s sold. So, we’ll be moving soon, to a new home in a new place.

We’re leaving our home and moving to a little, sleepy town north of here. Our new house is poky, full of character and nooks and corners. It’s surrounded by huge, old trees that have seen many stories and settled in a quiet street.

We were there today. Looking around the quaint little downtown area, getting a coffee and grinning like silly fools. It was mid morning and we were in the busiest area of town but something struck me as different in this sleepy little town.

It was the silence.

There was a woman walking three dogs that passed us and a man smoking a pipe with a shock of hair stuffed under his cap. There were some cars driving by but they were few and far between. Otherwise, nothing around made a sound.

It was so quiet.

Hubby and I chatted away, sipping our coffee dreaming of the day when he’ll work from our home in this quaint little town. We walked by small little stores full of oddities and a little old lady peering at a newspaper from inside a coffee shop. It almost as if time had stood still for this tiny little town.

The coffee was wonderful, the muffing we ate delicious but best of all, the very best of all, was the peace I felt. I can’t wait to live there.

Review: The Testaments

I wanted to read this book almost as soon as I heard it was going to be written. The trouble with that is that I built it up in my head so much that I feared the reality couldn’t possibly match my wishes. Not only did the book meet my expectations, it surpassed them incredibly. This one is a keeper for years and years to come.

The Testaments is Margaret Atwood’s latest novel and one that she refused to write for over thirty years. It completes her earlier work, The Handmaid’s Tale. In an interview, she explained that the reason she decided to write it was that: “Instead of going away from Gilead, we turned around and started coming back towards Gilead.” She’s dead on.

Image result for cover time magazine with margaret atwood

Timing is just right for this book. It might not have hit us the same way 20 years ago or even 10 years ago. But, right now, it’s an incredibly pertinent and important document to read. And, such an amazing piece of writing.

Image result for cover time magazine with margaret atwood

Timing wasn’t, of course, what I loved most about this book. I picked up the hardcover (and I never, ever buy hardcovers) and read two paragraphs…and I knew I had to buy it. I loved, loved the content, the tone and the way she wrote, almost immediately.

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The book is written by different narrators-that I won’t explain so as to not ruin it for others. Each perspective has a very different perspective into the life in Gilead and each is rich with information, history and flavour. Eventually, without giving away too much, things merge and out of it comes, finally, the conclusion to the Handmaid’s Tale.

I loved each of the different perspectives. I was fascinated with the theocracy that Margaret Atwood had created. I thought it was authentic, brutally realistic without becoming overdone, and showed astute insight into human nature. As I read, I couldn’t help but to agree with the narrator’s logic and choices. As horrific as Gilead was, I could understand what transpired in the book, I could see why they had done the terrible things that they had done. It made logical sense.

It was also fascinating that the narrators didn’t destroy the mystery or the twists that happened in the book. I was left hanging, desperately hanging, at the end of each chapter, not knowing what was going to happen next.

I have many beefs with some books where characters step out of character, where rules that were once inviolable are suddenly broken, where the remnants of the plot are artificially twisted into a semblance of order at the end. I was so relieved that this book did none of those things. The ending was realistic and fit a grim and very plausible storyline. The characters stayed true to their beliefs, personalities and history. And nothing impossible according to Gileadian rules happened.

Better still, I was hooked. This is a book I read in bits of time stolen while my husband and I tried to get our house listed on the market. I snuck that book into work, tried to read while people talked around me and even moved important things aside so I could read it. It was addictive in the most delicious sense. If I could design heaven, it would be filled with books just like this one.

I absolutely recommend it. If you’re a fan of dystopian novels, female fiction or suspense, this book will fit you like a glove. You do not need to have read The Handmaid’s Tale to get hooked either. Try a couple of paragraphs, I bet you’re like me and can’t put the thing down. It was magical.

Image result for the testaments book

 

New exciting book

Margaret Atwood is a very famous name around here. Not only is she a well known author, she’s Canadian.

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She’s also the author of The Handmaid’s Tale – a very successful book and a great TV series.

Image result for the handmaid's tale

Now, the reason for this post is that she’s just come out with the sequel to the book. People have been waiting for the sequel literally for decades and Margaret Atwood always said she wasn’t going to write it. Now, however, she has changed her mind.

Image result for the testaments

I, for one, can’t wait to get my grubby little paws on this one. Yum!

Curious fact

Giraffes, it turns out, only need to sleep laying down about 30 minutes a day. They’re able to get the rest of their sleep while standing up. It might be because laying down is so laborious for them…

Image result for baby giraffes sleeping

Or it might be because it’s hard to keep those legs straight.

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Or it might be because it’s such a long way to the ground

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But the fact remains, they manage to doze while standing up.

Now, why am I rambling about this? Just jealous, that’s all. I really wish I could sleep standing up. It’d come in really handy at work.

Little shout out

Just wanted to give a little shout out to someone that I personally think is a great writer, Luther M. Siler. You might not have heard about this particular author but he’s been around for a bit. He writes mostly fiction but, here’s where he’s really great: he writes so fluidly that reading his work is effortless. Plus, and this is a big one for me, he’s funny. There’s a humorous aspect to his writing that makes me keep wanting to read.

Searching for Malumba: Why Teaching is Terrible... and Why We Do It Anyway by [Siler, Luther M.]

Let me give you a little example. Take this book review blog entry. Blog entries are small, humble and basically just provide some information or show a point of view. Book reviews are usually informative. That’s it. They’re not fun to read in themselves. Luther’s is informative (without spoiling the book) but it’s also so fun to read.

Skylights by [Siler, Luther M.]

I was just snooping around his site when I read this book review. It’s not the type of book I’d read but, his review is simply delicious. I read it twice and had to stop and admire just how well he writes.

The Benevolence Archives, Vol. 1 by [Siler, Luther M.]

He hasn’t asked me to write this and has no idea I’m doing it. I just thought I’d share it because talent is hard to find but when I do find it, it’s just lovely.

Tales: The Benevolence Archives, Vol. 3 by [Siler, Luther M.]

So, if you’re on the hunt for a good read, you might want to check out his site.

Well, I didn’t like that one

I know I’m doing this just for fun but that little girl needed help. So I started over….and got this.

I like the facial proportions better here. The nose is better and the chin centred…and the shading done better as well….for me at least.