Now I have more time to stand and stare and read

I’ve been meaning to write more, both in this blog and in other writing, but somehow there’s always something else to do. Well, now I have time during the day and I will write. But, before that, yesterday was another sunny day, though cool out of the sun – there was no wind and it was perfect for a short walk. So D and I went off down the lane to a footpath crossing the fields for a gentle stroll. The views were clear and we could see for miles. We only went a short walk as we’re both somewhat unfit and took it easy, which was good as we saw and heard so much more than if we were striding out.

One thing in particular was impressive – along by the lake at the back of the local hotel in a small group of trees two pairs of herons are building nests at the top of two tall trees, over looking the lake. We stood and watched as one heron flew back and forth with twigs for the other in the nest to put in place, with much conversation between the two.

This made me remember that I have a CD to identify birdsong, which I must listen to. Before that, a short visit to the BBC website on our return to listen to birds such as blackbird, robin, great tit and wren made me realise how ignorant I am about birdsong. At least I can now recognise the robin who visits our garden regularly without having to see him.

Back to books – I’m in a ‘what shall I read next’ phase, as each book I start seems to be wrong. I recently finished Hallucinating Foucault by Patricia Duncker, which I read through almost in one go. It’s about madness/sanity and the reader/writer relationship amongst other things and is really good, one of the better books I’ve read this year. I’d just finished Emotional Geology by Linda Gillard, which also concerns madness and last night I picked up Keeping Faith by Jodie Picault, which at the start seems also to be about madness – perhaps a bit too much of one theme at the moment – I’ll look for something else more cheerful. At present I’m reading Charles Kingsley’s Water-Babies; I think the version I read as a child was not this one – a ‘watered-down’ version maybe. Also ongoing are Persuasion by Jane Austen (a re-read, first read at school of A Level) and Gentlemen & Players by Joanne Harris, which has now taken preference over the others.

My First Post

This is my first attempt at writing this blog. I was inspired by reading other people’s blogs – in particular Sandra at Bookworld, Danielle at A World in Progress and many others.

Danielle yesterday was asking what to do when you are feeling ho hum about a book you are reading? Finish it anyway? Or do you bail? In particular Hilary Mantel’s Beyond Black. Well, I read this in May and felt much the same – it got quite dreary in parts! I did finish it because I wanted to know how it ended and whether it got better – it didn’t.

Generally, I don’t finish a book if I can’t get into it as I decided some years ago that I’m never going to read all the books I’d like to anyway so why carry on with one that’s boring, or badly written.