A Late Welcoming of 2012

The last days of 2011 were lazy and lackluster.  I felt drained and uninspired and my motivation for anything was pretty much nonexistent.  This is not an unusual state of mind for the week between Christmas and New Year’s, I’m aware.  I picked up one book after another and put it back down again.  I read the first dozen or so pages of Earl Hamner’s Spencer’s Mountain but decided that my post-holiday self was no longer in the mood.  I read the first 100 pages of Alcott’s Long and Fatal Love Chase, which was not bad, but it too ended up back on the shelf (I never do that!).  I tried to get back into American Transcendentalism but no longer felt inspired to read it.  I finally resigned to the idea that I just needed a break and that the New Year would spark a New Beginning and with it, renewed vigor.  But the calendar flipped over to 2012 without any noticeable difference in my mood.  Still no energy.  Still no inspiration.  In truth, I’m fighting off a nasty sinus infection so that provides perhaps a reasonable explanation for my lethargy, but leave it to me to over-think it.  No matter how rational an explanation, when this happens, I fear that my reading passion is lost forever,  never to return.  So yeah, leave it to me to also be over-dramatic.

The weather said snow for Monday and I waited all day like a child in anticipation, glancing out the window now and again, squinting in an effort to catch the random flurry; if there was one, I didn’t want to miss it.  But the day passed, just bleak and cold and windy.  Very windy.  Once I heard shattering glass and there were the frequent rumbles of what sounded like trash cans overturning.  The evening hours found me in the kitchen warming up dinner.  It was well after dark and all the window coverings had been drawn for the night, when I noticed a strange fluorescent glow emanating through a gap in the blinds. When I peeked out I beheld what I had been so anxiously awaiting all day – snow!  Glorious snow!  It had come in stealth, leaving the streets, sidewalks, rooftops, everything blanketed in a coat of white. The neighborhood was glowing radiantly as the light from street lamps bounced off the snow.  Immediately I felt renewed.  Silly though it may sound, it was my metaphorical fresh start.

That night, I plunged into Edith Hamilton’s Mythology, eager to commence my exploration of the Greek Myths.  I had ordered a copy of Homer’s Iliad, and at last felt ready to kick off the new year with a hearty challenge.  Over the next two days, I absorbed Bill Bryson’s biography of Shakespeare and thoroughly enjoyed getting better acquainted with him in preparation for taking in more of his works this year.  This morning as I sipped my coffee I began Emerson in His Journals, kick starting my journaling project.

So finally, a warm welcome to 2012, and all that it has in store . . .

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13 thoughts on “A Late Welcoming of 2012

  1. Happy late entry into 2012! ;)

    You have what I have every now and then (and also had a few days ago) – every book-lovers nightmare – that dreaded disease where no book can hold your attention and you seriously worry if you will ever be cured.

    I’m so glad you have found your mojo. As I said I had it for a few days (it this was one of my shorter episodes) but I have now recovered between the pages of The Mayor of Casterbridge.

    Happy reading! :)

    • The Mayor of Casterbridge is a great book for reclaiming your mojo – at least it would be for me!
      As for the “dreaded disease,” there must have been something in the air! :) I’m not sure why I couldn’t just accept that I wasn’t feeling well and relax, but for some reason if I can’t properly sink my teeth into something after one or two tries I get panicky.

      • A friend of mine gave me a copy of The Mayor of Casterbridge for the holidays/housewarming. I’m really excited to read it.

  2. Happy New Year, Nicki! I can’t wait to see what you think of Hamilton’s “Mythology” and Homer’s “The Iliad”. I am having fun with Anglo-Saxon (various “Beowulf” translations) and Middle English (various “Sir Gawain and the Green Knight” translations), and the the great poetry of J.R.R. Tolkien these days. I am also getting ready to start reading Shakespeare’s “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” too. Let me know how you like Bryson’s “Shakespeare”, it sounds fascinating! Have a great day! Cheers! Chris

    • Happy New Year to you too!
      Wow, I really admire your tackling of Middle English!
      I tried Tolkien a couple of years ago, at the persistent urging of my husband, but I couldn’t get into it. Perhaps it just wasn’t the right time.
      I’ll be reading A Midsummer Night’s Dream this month too. And I loved Bryson’s book. He has a really light and breezy style – I thoroughly enjoyed it!

  3. Welcome to 2012! It’s really felt like a fresh start of a year for me as well. I’ve started Bryson’s book also, and am really enjoying it so far.

    Yay for finally seeing the snow and for finding your way into new reads. Here’s to an excellent reading 2012!

    • I really enjoyed Bryson’s book. It’s entertaining and accessible and “just enough,” if you know what I mean. It’s not so exhaustive that you feel overwhelmed, which often happens with biographies in my experience.

      The snow was a long time coming in my neck of the woods – this week’s was the first of the season, an event that usually occurs in early December.
      Happy reading to you too!

  4. I’m reading Bryson’s biography right now. I love it! (Although I dislike the mispelled word on the front cover.)

    Spencer’s Mountain is a great story. It picks up as you continue reading it. The bgininng is a bit slow…

    Glad you’re feeling better!

    • Do you mean “accesible” in the review blurb from the Houston Chronicle?

      I really wanted to be able to get into Spencer’s Mountain. Pre-holiday, I was jazzed for it. I’ve been to Earl Hamner’s home and museum in Schulyer, VA – my family had a mini-reunion there earlier this year – so I thought I would immediately feel a connection with Hamner. I’m not blaming the book though. It was me. When I started reading it I was feeling at my worst. I definitely haven’t written it off. :)

  5. So happy to hear that it snowed for you and it cheered you up. I hope you kick the sinus infection. Sometimes it is good to take a break and let the body heal. Enjoy the book on myths. I look forward to your posts this year.

  6. I can’t wait for our first snow!!! I’m sure I won’t be saying that once it actually does snow and I have to walk to work in it, but for now, I can’t wait for it!

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