Wind chills to 25 below, singing "Earth as hard as iron, water like a stone"-- navigating paths, driveways, and streets "brushed with brooms of steel" with cleats on my boots,-- and the darkness! It's so dark after Christmas is taken down. This is the perfect reading weather.
Last night I had my first book club meeting in which I am a member. (I have spoken to lots of them, and always been envious of the smart, curious, comradery of readers I meet.) The thing is, the invitation included the caveat that I don't write about the club. So I'm not, I promise-- except to say how much I loved spending a freezing January night in a lovely little old house filled with art and women and good food and drink talking about writing and reading-- (see, I didn't even name the book we didn't like very much to avoid an identifier.)
What I can't help but share is that it was so uplifting to my very soul to rise out of the muck of the world, and yet be doing something good, and positive, reading and talking about stories and words and characters, and noticing beautiful sentences- (there was one that grabbed the heart of one reader...) that I know, in that ripple in the ocean way, this is all so very good to do, and that, at this point, it is my best hope for everything in 2017-- family, friends, daily life and work-- to live more intentionally-- you know?
So when I came home, my husband was sound asleep. The dogs didn't bark. I watched Michelle Obama's farewell speech on my phone and choked up with her. Of course she made me proud! I will so miss her, them, that family in the Whitehouse. My daughter, a teacher, sent it to me.
This morning I told my husband he should start a men's book club, as he is a great and prolific reader, and he said, "Sure, we could meet in a bar?" I said "the brewery!" And then suggested we should read the same books sometime, and he said we do, and it's true we both like Daniel Silva. Then I said I had recommended Mary Oliver's new and collected essays for the book club. They are perfect; a quick thought provoking and inspiring read. "Maybe you can read it too, and we can talk about it," I said. "Is there any action in it?" he asked. "Not really. I mean maybe a bird hits the window?" Which is also exactly why the witty and wise women of the book club will like it.