Over the past three months, I have slowly but steadily read a good deal of books, never as many as I want but still making progress.
Lawrence in Arabia by Scott Anderson: A very intersting look at the famed (T.E.) Lawrence of Arabia from a historical perspective. Not just Lawrence but three other main individuals that have a tremendous influence on the Middle East during WWI and to this day. A great read that shows how England and France bungled the entire region up and caused a good deal of the issues we face today.
Between Meals: An Appetite for Paris by A.J. Liebling: The book came highly recommend to me but I did not care for it. Liebling treasured a good appetite as a prerequisite for writing about food, as his accounts of substantial meals (two portions of cassoulet, one steak topped with beef marrow, and a dozen or so oysters, for example) attest. For the poised, precise, literary, and humorous flavor of his writing, you need only crack open the book–any page will do.
Like others, I receive way too many emails, but the emails from TripAdvisor always get me to stop and open them. I love knowing that the reviews I leave are read. It also reminds me that I need to add reviews of other places I have visited. Their emails drive me to write new TripAdvisor reviews and reinforce that I should keep doing so.
No regrets. Take the chance.
Last night while I lay thinking here, some WHAT IFS crawled inside my ear and pranced and partied all night long and sang their same old WHAT IF song: WHAT IF I’m dumb in school? WHAT IF they’ve closed the swimming pool? WHAT IF I get beat up? WHAT IF there’s poison in my cup? WHAT IF I start to cry? WHAT IF I get sick and die? WHAT IF I flunk that test? WHAT IF green hair grows on my chest? WHAT IF nobody likes me? WHAT IF a bolt of lightning strikes me? WHAT IF I don’t grow talle? WHAT IF my head starts getting smaller? WHAT IF the fish won’t bite? WHAT IF the wind tears up my kite? WHAT IF they start a war? WHAT IF my parents get divorced? WHAT IF the bus is late? WHAT IF my teeth don’t grow in straight? WHAT IF I tear my pants? WHAT IF I never learn to dance? Everything seems well, and then the nighttime WHAT IFS strike again!
–Shel Silverstein, Where the Sidewalk Ends
It might be silly, but I believe that if you never put your goals out there, you will never accomplish them. Some are easy, some are more difficult. There are places like London or Los Angeles that I have no desire to visit but that I may eventually reach, a major city is a major city in most cases. I like adventure and want my family to take more adventurous vacations.
- Walk somewhere. I would like to go on a walking adventure. Something like the Trans Pennine Trail in England, the Camino de Satiago in Spain, Pacific Coast Trail in the Western US or the Appalachian Trail out east.
- Angkor Wat in Cambodia. Where the jungle took over and the entire complex was lost for centuries.