|Once Upon A Time (c. 1850)
I cannot believe where the time has gone. It’s passed by so quickly that my mind is spinning. Which is not good. Lately I’ve been thinking about balance in life, and how we find it. Is it only people who live in large cities who have this problem, as events and opportunities are much more accessible? Or do we all do it to ourselves and are “nuts,” as my scorekeeping liaison is fond of calling me? I have a feeling there are many answers to this question, all of them complex and none of them clear.
June …… what can I say about June? Honestly, so many things blur together which, I believe, comes from …… yes, being entirely too busy. Most of it was spent getting ready for the big international women’s softball tournament held yearly in my area. Usually I help scorekeep but this year was the year they made me head scorekeeper so I had almost 40 volunteers working under me. Help! It was certainly trial-by-fire and for 11 days, 14-15 hours per day, I was kept moving, going from diamond to diamond, fixing scoreboards, sound systems, talking to volunteers, altering schedules continuously, grabbing volunteers on the fly for either scorekeeping, announcing or scoreboards, etc. etc. It went very well and the support and help I received from my volunteers was truly exceptional and very much appreciated. The tournament was a wonderful experience, but even so, I must admit I was relieved when it was over, as the long days were beginning to wear on me. Japan beat Australia in the final, which was no surprise as softball is huge in Japan and their teams are nearly always impossible to beat. After that tournament, I went on to be head scorekeeper for a Provincials tournament which was very enjoyable (and much smaller) but I was pretty much exhausted at the end of it all. It was nice to fly off for vacation a couple of days later and I won’t be back for at least another week. Needless to say, I’m sleeping lots, enjoying getting more reading time than I have had recently, doing lots of kayaking, and relaxing in nature. A couple of days ago, I came outside on the deck to find that Finn (my dog) had caught a mouse; the mouse was traumatized and Finn was looking sufficiently traumatized as well, as he was most likely trying to play with it and didn’t quite realize the consequences. We put it in a berry box, gave it food (blueberries) and water, and it appeared to be getting better, but sadly something came along last night and ate it, so our nursing was all for naught. Poor mouse. Such is the circle of life, I suppose.
|© Cleo @ Classical Carousel
Oh, before I forget, I did manage to raise some butterflies, something I’d been planning to do for years and never managed to buy the kit in time. They were Painted Ladies and all hatched easily except for one. It was liberating to watch them fly away clothed in their bright painted colours. I do wonder though, while they’re supposed to be native to this area, I never see any. The occasional Monarch, yes, Painted Ladies, no …..
|© Cleo @ Classical Carousel
Some rather distressing news in our province is the unprecedented number of forest fires burning throughout British Columbia. Today, as I sit outside on the deck, there is an air quality advisory in effect and I’m hoping for winds to breeze the smoginess away. To date, there have been a total of over 200 fires with 325,000 hectares (803,000 acres) have been scorched and many people’s houses have burned to the ground; a friend’s cottage at Loon Lake was destroyed by the flames. Firefighters from the U.S. and Mexico have travelled to help out but sadly the hot temperatures continue and there doesn’t seem to be much reprieve. Very tragic and we can only hope for a change of weather soon.
From fires to reading … did I already mention reading? Of course, I did! I would have had very little to report for my July post, but since I didn’t do one and we’re already in August, I have news! I’m almost finished reading Shadow of the Moon for Cirtnecce’s read-along, a book about the great India mutiny of 1857. As with all M.M. Kaye’s books, it’s well-written and delivers a comprehensive history of the time, drawing the reader right into the story. I finished History of the Peloponnesian War by Thucydides and enjoyed it much more than I expected. It gets better as it goes along and offers an insightful look into politics, power and war. I’m also reading Augustine’s City of God (sooooo different from his Confessions) and Plato’s Republic. I can’t say I’m enjoying the former yet, but the latter is certainly fascinating, not only for Plato’s ideas but for the way in which he delivers them; one often can’t quite tell whether Socrates is being serious, or playful, or ironic. Otherwise, I need to pick up Dead Souls again by Gogol and finish it off and continue with O’s The Pickwick Papers Read-Along.
And so what does August bring? Other than the end of my vacation, I have a drive to Saskatchewan planned. While I’ve seen places in Alberta (Lake Louise, Banff, etc.), I’ve never been further east in Canada by car so it should be interesting. And yes, (broken record starting….) the food blog is still coming along, yet technically not launched. I just became too busy over the summer and could not give it the attention it needed. My partner is being patient (although perhaps it would help if he’d be a little more prodding! Oooo, but is that nagging? That wouldn’t be good! 😉 ). I’m going to try to get something happening on it in August but it might not be until September, if I’m honest. I’m still thinking about it though …. collecting recipes, ideas, etc. so in a way, I haven’t completely abandoned it.
|© Cleo @ Classical Carousel
And books? I already have so much I’m reading but I do plan to add a couple of others to the mix. Plutarch’s Lives is ready to go, and I want to start Dostoyevsky’s Crime and Punishment. I’ve also been eyeing The Gormenghast Trilogy by Mervyn Peake which looks very interesting. If anyone has read it, can you give me a positive recommendation?