Tuesday, 26 April 2011

Where did the time go?

Things I did this past month:

1.Picked up countless books to read, started them, put them down again.
2.Went to physio. Advised might need surgery eventually.  Confirmed meniscus (cartilage) tear in knee.
3. Two setbacks with healing knee. Enjoy healing techniques at physio tremendously.  Discover might need to buy exercise bike after all, if only for knee recovery.  Have not told husband yet.
4. Bought a cane.
5. Bought plane tickets to England for 10 days for husband's 40th birthday, sent daughter along with husband for grandparents to hug and cuddle on April 14.
6. Heroically survived 7 days without spouse, with wounded knee and six year old son. Managed to do laundry, dishes, make lunches, get to work.  Knee gave out once.
7.  On the 7th day (last Thursday), son woke up with pain.  Ended up in Children's hospital emergency department, and then with 3 day stay at hospital while son was intravenously fed antibiotics for a skin infection called cellulitis.
8. Discovered at hospital that not having a cell phone and being alone with child meant limited and collect phone calls anywhere.  Decided cell phones were required after all.  So is laptop.  Have not told husband about desire for laptop. 
9. Discovered that the Children's Hospital of Eastern Ontario is an excellent caring facility for sick kids, with warm and caring nurses.  Realized after one night that torn meniscus + pull-out cot for parents = pain.  Slept in chair for other two nights.
10. Arrived home thankful for recovering child, to greet returning husband and daughter the next day.
11.  Somehow a month has passed without blogging.  How did this happen?  Wonder how life is speeding up as I age, instead of slowing down.  
12.  Feel need for holiday.

What I am learning as I have now not been shopping (even groceries) for 6 whole weeks:  what I really need to be happy is my health, my family (and their health), some books, and some chocolate, and to be able to go for walks again.

Books read that saved the day: 3
The Tapestry of Love - Rosy Thornton.  4.5/5  I really enjoyed this book.  I especially loved the first half, when Catherine moves to a new home in the Cevanne mountains and begins her life over again after a divorce.  I loved the evocative rhythms of life in the mountains, the slowing of everything down to the movements of  the days and seasons in the Cevannes.  It was like a rural retreat for my soul, too.  My biggest problem with the novel is Catherine's sister, and what happens with Catherine's new friend down the road, Patrick.  In my family, with us sisters, what happened would be almost unforgiveable.  It is explained in the book, but it still troubled me after.  I don't want to give it away as a spoiler, and it didn't detract from the wonderful setting and life Catherine is creating, or the book.  It was more a distraction that I didn't feel was needed.  I could have a read this story all about Catherine in her new village and it would have been terrific just with that.  It really is a lovely novel.  Just what I needed to help take my mind of my hurt knee and inability to go anywhere at all.

Moonheart - Charles de Lint. 4.7/5.   This was a reread for me.  I first read Moonheart 20 odd years ago. It was the first book by Charles de Lint that I read.  I fell instantly in love.  I really of course, loved Tamson House, the mysterious, wonderful, magical house that protects everyone within, that is set square in the middle of Ottawa, in a neighborhood called the Glebe.  The Glebe really does exist, and is one of my favourite parts of town for shopping in.  Tamson House, sadly, doesn't exist, although even knowing that, reading about it's location - and it is set is specific parts of the Glebe that could be Tamson House, only makes me wish more desperately that it did exist.
      Upon rereading it, I found I loved it as much on this time around.  I see things now in the book that I didn't see before, such as recurring themes in Charles' work as the other worlds that mythic beings inhabit, that certain magical items in ours can transport characters to for encounters with these beings. Celtic myths are entertwined with Native American mythology, a big recurring theme in the Charles's works.  One of the more unusual features is the presence of the police (in the form of our RCMP), and government officials, and a criminal element that is frightening, violent, and makes for an interesting mix. The main characters are Charles' wonderful mix of fun and realistic and just a little bit fey.  Highly recommended fantasy book, that was among the first that started the urban fantasy books of the 1980's.  4.8/5
I really want to find Tamson House, still!!!

I can't write more, electrical storm is suddenly come around the house, so I will be back with more reviews and catch up in the next couple of days.  I have to talk about the new Dr Who season premiere!!!



Kerry said...

I think you explained very succinctly where the time went. :)

I'm sorry to hear about the continued knee problems and sick son. A child is hospital is not fun at all.

It's good to hear you loved "Moonheart" just as much on a reread. I, too, read it long ago and loved it and it is on my list of things I dream of rereading when I have the time.

Susan said...

Kerry: Thank you for your sympathy. March really is a blur, and so is some of April now! However, it's not much compared to what you go through with your illness. I have a little better understanding about limitations now.

I'm enjoying all the de LInt books I am rereading - I think this is my third reread over the past couple of years. I'm having fun rereading his older works even as I keep up with the new ones. I hope you can get to them one day, Kerry!

Cath said...

Wow, what a time of it you've had! Hope your son is on the road to recovery. Horrible time of it you're having with your knee. Mine are not great so I can sympathise. Sending *hugs*.

I had the same issues with Tapestry that you did. I have no sister but suspected that most would have said to the other, 'Are you interested in this guy? Would I be treading on your toes if I...' On the other hand I expect there are certain kinds of sisters who would not bother. It's a funny old world and that's the truth.

Take care.

Susan said...

Cath: thank you so much! I hate hearing about other people with bad knees, even if it's comforting to know I'm not the only one. And you and I both love gardening.....Graham is well on his way to recovery now. Thanks :-)

I know, after I put it down, I ended up wondering, ewww, how could she be with him after? I know that Rosy tried to show how it happened - how self-contained Catherine was - but it just makes him a bit of a sleaze in my eyes. Otherwise a wonderful book and I wish there were more of just Catherine and her experiences there.

Kailana said...

Looks like you have been busy. Too bad it has been not so much fun things.

I am on a bit of Charles de Lint extravaganza. I read Dreams Underfoot, and am in the midst of Widdershins and The Very Best of Charles de Lint. It's been fun. :)

Anonymous said...

Susan, my goodness, what a time you have had! I'm so sorry about all the troubles and hope that your knee and your son will feeling much better soon. Hugs and take care!

Susan said...

Kailana: I just saw that you and Carl are reviewing the Best of Charles de Lint together! I have to go take a look now at what you've both said. I really enjoyed Widdershins - I read it two? three? years ago, and Dreams Underfoot last fall. I love Dreams Underfoot. I'll come see your reviews!

Susan said...

Kay: Thank you so much! It has been quite a time. I wish I could have read more. Graham is feeling much better too, almost like his normal self now. Thanks :-)

Daphne said...

Susan! What a terrible time you've been through! Sending lots of healing wishes and thoughts your way.

I have to read Moonheart -- it's one of the few de Lints I haven't gotten around to yet. Thanks for the great review. And rest up!! My goodness.

Anonymous said...

I'm sorry to hear that you and your son have been having health problems. You deserve bricks of chocolate (that's how I cope too) and tons and tons of books, as well as the time to read them. You have had quite a month!

Susan said...

Daphne: thank you! and I am resting up. It's so good to be home!

Stephanie D: MMM, bricks of chocolate. I could go for that! My husband kindly brought back some of my favourite from England, so that is helping me heal this week! lol

GeraniumCat said...

I'm sorry you've been having such a tough time - you've really had a wretched year so far. Hugs from me too, and I do hope things are better soon.

Everything seems to be conspiring to make me want to read more Charles de Lint, although I am trying very hard not to buy "proper" books. None of his books are on Kindle here and I want to re-read Moonheart! (stamps foot)Guess I'll have to re-read Greenmantle instead.

Susan said...

Geranium Cat: thank you for your hug, I could really use it! I'm able to walk a little over two blocks and back now, with little pain, so fingers crossed.....and Graham is back to his normal self, too.

None of Charles' books are on Kindle? I find that surprising. I shouldn't be surprised that you read Moonheart, too, should I?? lol I think I did read Green Mantle, but don't own it. Did you read Yarrow? That's another I really enjoyed. So many of his are so good. I must get to his latest, Muse and Reverie.