Saturday, June 23, 2018

June (fourth week) 2018 Reads & Little Trips

Little trips this Week:
Monday - Picnic & swim (wading, didn't get my hair wet) Day Pond State Park, Colchester CT.

Wednesday, Thursday, Friday - a little trip to do some more exploring in the northwest corner of Connecticut. Stayed in a cabin at Lake Waramaug State Park. This is not a rugged wilderness.
Spent the three days just poking around the area, wandering , seeing  few local sites, and just relaxing. Very low-key.

Thur. Morning scenic drive to West Cornwall (covered bridge); afternoon wandering around village of Kent (live music at various outdoor venues)
Fri. Gunn Memorial Library & Historical Museum; Institute for American Indian Studies, both in Washington.

  Breakfasts:  Wed. home;  Thur. Nine Main Cafe, New Preston; Fri.  Noel's concession stand at Lake Waramaug State Park.
  Lunches:     Wed. picnic lunch (food from home) at cabin; Thur. J.P. Gifford Market and Catering Company, Kent followed by Ice Cream at Annie Bananie; Fri. Picnic at Black Rock State Park, Watertown (food from Marbledale Citco Quik Mart, New Preston)
  Dinners:  Wed. at cabin; Thur. Fantastic splurge meal on the terrace at Hopkins Inn on Lake Waramaug. 

Reading this week:
This week the "Deal Me In" card is the King of Clubs; the selection is Chung Wenyin, Flesh and Bone Translated from the Chinese by Jennie Chia-Hui Chu
A Taiwanese daughter visits a healer at her mother's insistence.

The Designers Who Made Disco: "The nightclub has always been a fiercely creative and radical architectural typology, a new exhibition at the Vitra Design Museum argues."  by Alice Bucknell

Gutenberg finds...
My Year in a Log Cabin by William Dean Howells
Will download this to Kindle and read next time we stay in a log cabin.

The Heptameron of Margaret, Queen of Navarre
Didn't read yet.

from the library...

Murder in the Museum by John Rowland
I picked up this British Library Crime Classic at a library book sale as a relaxing read on a little trip. Perfect choice. I read it in a couple of days and left at a little free library at the campground.

Granada by Radwa Ashour; translated from the Arabic by William Granara 
Interesting novel  of a Moorish family during the Inquisition.

Knots: Stories by Gunnhild Øyehaug; translated from the Norwegian by Kari Dickson
A little uneven; mostly good. 

Welcome to Your World: How the Built Environment Shapes Our Lives by Sarah Williams Goldhagen

Saturday, June 16, 2018

June (third week) 2018 Reads & Day Trips

Another week of fantastic weather hence more picnics...

Sunday Drive - Picnic: Chaffinch Island Park, Guilford, CT. This is a beautiful municipal park. Ice Cream: Fenwick Ice Cream Co.

Thursday Drive - Glastonbury/Hebron area. Picnic: picked up food at Gardiner's Market (terrific market) then ate at the Glastonbury ramp for the Rocky Hill - Glastonbury Ferry. We decided not to cross on the ferry and drove around exploring the area. We ended up at Gay City State Park  Hebron, CT where we sat a spell enjoying the perfect weather (and munching store bought raspberry tarts).

Saturday (today) Drive - Picnic: picked up food from Pete's Weston Market (Weston CT--pricey but good food,a great selection of picnic stuff, and a nice bakery department petits fours! ) Ate at Putnam Memorial State Park Redding, CT.

So another week with not a lot of reading--just too nice not to go out and about. I did read a bit...

This week the "Deal Me In" card is the Five of Clubs; the selection is The Canal-Boat (in The Oxford Harriet Beecher Stowe Reader edited and with introduction by Joan D. Hedrick.)
This is the last of the Stowe selections for the short story challenge. I have been reading the other parts of the book and have now read the entire book. Great reading.

Project Gutenberg Compilation of 233 Short Stories of Chekhov by Chekhov
Wow!Of course I didn't read them all this week, but what a great resource.

Now here is a poem I can understand. 

Smith & Foulkes depicts an animated history of tennis for Wimbledon

And I've been spending a lot of time at The Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) State Parks and Forests web site.

from the library..

The King Is Always Above the People: Stories by Daniel Alarcón
Good collection.

Saturday, June 09, 2018

June (second week) 2018 Reads & Day Trips

There was lots of meandering this week:
   Sunday drive - This time in Fairfield County, CT. with lunch Easton Village Store and ice cream at Holy Cow in Newtown.
   Wednesday picnic - Harkness Memorial State Park, Waterford, CT. A gorgeous day to view Long Island Sound and the islands. Did not tour the house, it's open on weekends only.
   Thursday Shopping - three specialty food markets.
      The Olive Bazaar in Berlin, CT - Middle Eastern specialties, halal meats, fresh produce & bakery,  frozen ingredients and entrees, dairy, bulk and packaged staples, lots of special treats. Clean and roomy, a fun place to shop. Owners very helpful and friendly.
      Asia Grocers in Cromwell, CT - large, clean, well stocked with a beautiful produce section. Plenty of Asian foods (mostly Indian). The most "supermarket-like" place of the three.
      Euro Grocery, Rocky Hill, CT - Mostly Greek, but they do have some other European foods. A small shop with a good cheese selection.
  Friday Picnic - This time by the Connecticut River at Haddam Meadows State Park, Haddam, CT
  Saturday Picnic - Picked up picnic stuff at Highland Park Market in Farmington and drove to Topsmead State Forest, Litchfield, CT for picnic and house tour.

There was also a library trip in there somewhere, Wednesday? No, it was Thursday. Picked up 5 books I had requested + 5 from browsing. 

The reading this week...

This week the "Deal Me In" card is the Four of Spades; the selection is Together With Chicken by Jung Young Moon; translated from the Korean by Jung Yewon (in A Most Ambiguous Sunday, and Other Stories)
I'm enjoying these offbeat stories.

What better reading for our day trip season than this?  An Illustrated History of the Picnic Table by Martin Hogue. 

I've been exploring the first issue of Panel Magazine. This Budapest based magazine looks promising.

I love this house! One of my recent enthusiasms is looking at houses with indoor swimming pools. This pool isn't exactly indoor, but then it's not exactly outdoor either.

Issue 52 of The Quarterly Conversation is full of good stuff: Emma Ramadan on being a translator;  Chad Post makes me want read a 640 page book I would never have considered if I hadn't read his review of Lost Empress* by Sergio de la Pava; and J. Daniel Elam reviews Alan Hollinghurst's The Sparsholt Affair makes me so glad I read the book. I'm hesitant to read more of this issue--my TBR list is already so long....
*am delighted to find I can get this at my local library.

Speaking of Chad Post, The Reykjavík Grapevine has a good post about Chad's Open Letter Books.
Ten Years in Translation: US Publisher Of Icelandic Fiction Open Letter Books Fills A Decade

I spent a lot of time browsing at The Reykjavík Grapevine, which bills itself as "Your essential guide to life, travel and entertainment in Iceland." 

from the library...

The People in the Photo by Hélène Gestern; translated from the French by Emily Boyce and Ros Schwartz. A fun read.

Black Vodka: Ten Stories
by Deborah Levy 
Can't go wrong with Levy.

from my shelves...

The Tidings of the Trees by Wolfgang Hilbig; translated from the German by Isabel Fargo Cole

Saturday, June 02, 2018

June (first week) 2018 Reads & Day Trips

We dined at a castle this week, sort of.  Sandwiches: watercress and prosciutto on ciabatta. Dessert: strawberry shortcake. Castle: Gillette Castle State Park
Our picnic site was near one of the ponds and we strolled around the area without  actually going in the castle (been there done that). It was a beautiful day and a nice drive home exploring back roads.

Another outing this week combined a trip to the Wallingford Public Library with a lunch stop at Kayumangi, a Filipino grocery store/restaurant in Wallingford.  (Link is to a sample page, don't know if will keep.) We had delicious stews served with rice and a excellent flan for dessert. We'll be back!

 Oh yes this is a reading blog so here is what I read...humm, Filipino food and Peruvian lit. What's next? Look for a local Peruvian eatery? Filipino writing? The books waiting for me on the holds shelf are Iranian, French, and British!

This week the "Deal Me In" card is the Three of Clubs; the selection is Muqtatafat : a comics anthology featuring artists from the Middle East region: Part one: English language. Manal and Alaa : a love story / by Lena Merhej -- Breath underwater / by Mike V. Derderian -- Anomaly / by Omar Khouri --Time travel / by Maya Zankoul --Liberty gone wild / by Nidal El Khairy --Filsteezy / by Mahdi Fleifel and Basel Nasr --Birdie mania / by Ghadi Ghosn -- Noûs somme / by Sandra Ghosn -- The genie of the throne / by Wassim Maouad

Mourning My Birthplace: On Immigration, Family, and the Distance in Between “When you’ve spent your life apart from a loved one, what prepares you for not knowing how to mourn?” by Natalia Sylvester.  
The author was born in Lima, Peru and  came to the U.S. at age four. In this essay she tell about going to Peru join family at her dying grandfather's bedside.

from my shelves...

Ten Women by Marcela Serrano; translated from the Spanish by Beth Fowler (Kindle edition)
Very good linked stories of Peruvian women. Nine are clients of a psychologist. Their stories are first person narratives. The tenth woman is the therapist. Her story is told by her assistant.

Saturday, May 26, 2018

May (fourth week) 2018 Reads

Finished two really good books this week and a third one that I'm not so sure about. Also had a very pleasant picnic at the Hampton Reservoir Boat Launch. The picture shows that this a place for launching canoes, kayaks, and other small craft.
It's a really pleasant and restful place.
Saw some families of geese and some other birds. 

This week the "Deal Me In" card is, oops, cards are, a Joker and the Five of Spades.
The story for ♠5♠ is Way of Remembrance  by Jung Young Moon; translated from the Korean by Jung Yewon (in A Most Ambiguous Sunday and other stories)
A story of mourning and remembering. Weird and I liked it.

The Joker is a wild here is something I came across this when I was looking at Lev Parikian's blog (see entry for his book below) Reasons to be cheerful

from my shelves...

Why Do Birds Suddenly Disappear? 200 birds, 12 months, 1 lapsed birdwatcher by Lev Parikian
I doubt that I will ever go bird watching in the UK (or anywhere else), still I thoroughly enjoyed this account of attempting to spot 200 species in one calendar year. It was really fun to look over Parikian's shoulder while he indulged his passion.

Actually I occasionally watch a few birds in my backyard--robins (our state bird), cardinals, some sort of woodpecker who drilled a hole in the eaves, a wild turkey, some migrating geese who liked the big puddle in the back yard, and an unidentified little bird that has set a nest in our hanging flower basket. And then those aquatic thingies (geese? ducks? loons?) at the reservoir. I enjoy looking at them without knowing details. Quoting the author (from his blog entry  Reasons to be cheerful) "Resisting the temptation to photograph the above and put it on Instagram, but just drinking it in and remembering it."

I also enjoy the author's blog where he talks about birds, music, cook books and other stuff.   

 I participated in crowdfunding this book through Unbound.

Radiant Terminus by Antoine Volodine; translated from the French by Jeffrey Zuckerman


The Attempt by Magdaléna Platzová: translated from the Czech by Alex Zucker
Not sure how I feel about this novel about anarchists. I thin it deserves a reread before I comment or rate it.
Free from the publisher as a sort of "bonus" along with a book I requested through LibraryThing.