We’ve been back in California for almost exactly five weeks now and while there are (and will probably continue to be) some things I miss about New York, I have to admit that our quality of life has gone up significantly since our return to the west coast. The weather has been amazing and our new apartment lets in so much light through its east facing windows that you can’t help but start the day off early and with a smile on your face. As a substitute for Jenn’s favorite time of day, “glowy building time,” we are now able to enjoy “glowy room time” as the sunset beams though our west facing windows in the evening. Yes, you read that right, east and west facing windows - try that in an affordable apartment in New York! All of this sunlight makes us happy and after receiving our first electric bill today I can add that it makes our pocketbook happy as well. It’s been a fast paced arrival though and we have filled our days, no doubt. Even though we were swamped with wedding planning mania (still going full tilt), I started work a mere five days after we arrived leaving much of the difficult home-making work to Jenn. Thankfully she tackled it like a champ and I chipped in where I could. I also decided it was time to pick up my training again and thanks to a schedule put together by Hal Higdon and handily added to my Google calendar by, you guessed it - Jenn, I have logged almost 25 miles of runs. Together we have added another 10+ miles of hikes exploring the green-spaces within a short drive of home. There should be more posts (and pictures next time!) soon, so stay tuned!
The year 2010 came to a close last night and, although I have never really made any resolutions, last year I set a goal to do something that seemed impossible to me at the time. The goal was to read one book every week for an entire year and for 14 weeks I was 100% successful. From January to April of 2010 I read one book every week. I was (and am) proud of myself for accomplishing that much. I am not sure I can claim to have read 14 books in the previous five years combined (excluding required reading for grad school and study material for my licensing exams) so 2010 was a good year in that respect. Murakami’s The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle set me back a few weeks in late April / early May and eventually wound up being the one that knocked me off my stride. I don’t blame Murakami - the book is excellent and I now have two more of his sitting on my bookshelf since finishing that one. The writing is sublime, but it’s also full of mood and the “action” involves lots of brooding and sitting at the bottom of a well. It’s also quite long, but I digress. My point is that while I did not (by a large margin) read a book a week in 2010, I did read 17 books for the pure joy and enlightenment of reading them last year and I plan to better that this year. I’ll optimistically call it my #bookaweek and publish my progress on Twitter as a little bit of a challenge to myself and while I will earnestly try to read a book every week, I will be satisfied to read 26 or even 18 books in 2011 and you should too!! Here’s my list from 2010. I should also give credit to Julien for the inspiration. He’s got some good advice for anyone thinking of attempting this - maybe I should reread it today…
- Lush Life
- Stranger Than Fiction: True Stories
- Anansi Boys
- The 4-Hour Workweek
- Let The Great World Spin
- The Smile at the Foot of the Ladder
- The Thin Man
- Franny and Zooey
- Death of a Salesman
- The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle
- The Diamond Age
Happy 2011 - may it be filled with new adventures!
Brings to mind several conversations I’ve had in the past (and some I’m confident I will have again) but one special, perhaps momentous, conversation stands out. Sadly it has been recounted often enough to be left to the imagination here. PS - I think this Stephenson guy might have a future. Really enjoying The Diamond Age. (Yes, I know is old. Yes I’ve read his other work. No, not all of it… The books are very long, I’m working on it.)