I’m so sorry, I’ve been away for ages. First I was felled by the longest bout of ’flu I have ever had. It dragged on for three sodding weeks, and it came just at a moment when I had an enormous amount of work to do. So initially I was ill and furious. I had to learn to accept that I had no control over the situation and could do nothing about it. Yet that was a very good lesson for me. (Being ill is always quite a good lesson for me because my partner suffers from ME and I find that illness is a good way for me to check into his world once in a while.)
(Me, being ill, or porcelain Unterweissbach figurine, early to mid- twentieth century)
The ’flu also provided me with the opportunity to reread a great slew of children’s books which, handily enough, I had just a few weeks earlier decanted from various cardboard boxes in the attic. After a bit I began to hope I wouldn’t ever be well again... I discovered that I need to acquire more books by Alan Garner, Diana Wynne Jones, Penelope Farmer and Elizabeth Goudge. For my daughter, of course (yes, she’s only three but it’s good to stock up). The Witch Family, The Little Broomstick and The Night They Stole the Alphabet were just as good as I remembered.
Since then I have been doing my stage, or placement teaching, at a local technical school, which was interesting and – when I finally stopped being ridiculously stressed out about it – sometimes fun. But oh my! a lot of work.
Sorry, Dolce Bellezza, I did finish reading Snow Country in time for your Japanese Literature Challenge but as you see, failed to write anything about it. Thank you though, for providing the spur to get me to read it. I shall certainly be reading more Japanese literature in the future. Catie wisely pointed out in her comment to my last post that more reading is the answer to the question of strangeness, and an answer which involves more reading is the sort of answer I like...
Alex, AJ and litlove also wrote interesting comments on the last post and I rudely never replied to them or to Catie. I apologise for that too! I had rather arrogantly assumed that everyone read in much the same way as I did, so was fascinated to discover that that’s not at all the case. AJ and Alex, I’d love to read more about your reading experiences. And I wonder if it’s possible to change how we experience reading; if I could train myself to read as you do, would it make texts like Snow Country more approachable I wonder?