Books and love

I just sent in a story and am feeling very accomplished and happy with myself. Now I shall do nothing for the next couple of days. What a hectic and stressful life I lead!

Serendipitiously, I got a book I had been dying to read delivered today via Flipkart. Is there anything more satisfying than getting new books? Whenever I get a new book I have to write my name, date and where I got it from on the first page. Growing up, I saw my father always doing the same and I guess I picked up the habit from him.

Even now when I open any of his books to read I find his name, date and place where he bought the book from neatly printed. I remember reading ‘Pride and Prejudice’ when I was 16 years old, it was a red leatherbound book with gold etching and was part of a set my father had bought from a bookstore in Parasia. I don’t know if he has read all the books he bought but we, his children, have pulled them out, read them and not treated them with as much care as we should have.

Now that I am older I have become more gentle and careful with books. I love looking at my shelves of books, most read, some waiting to be read. I cannot leave a bookstore without buying at least one book. I told my husband if we ever become very rich and have tons of money, he should be prepared that I will probably spend it all away on books.

I spend a lot of time alone but I never have feel lonely because my books provide me with all the company I need. How could I not love them, when they give me so much?

Just Read

Over the past couple of days I read two books; Meg Wolitzer’s The Interestings and Akhil Sharma’s Family Life. I enjoyed both for different reasons, though both books left me wanting more.

The Interestings follows the lives of 6 individuals who meet at an artsy summer camp in the 70s. They grow up, some remain friends, some of them are successful, some not so successful, they marry and have families of their own and try to find their way in the city of New York. I could connect with the angst, feeling lost, not feeling fulfilled and wanting more. There was some amount of whininess, but I could look past it, who among us isn’t whiney? But the cliches and stereotypes the characters fell into intermittently annoyed me.

Family Life is based on the author’s own life and is about his parents, brother and him living the immigrants life in America. But then there is an accident and his brother is declared brain-dead and everything changes. The book shows how the family evolves and ┬átries to cope. It is heartbreaking, sad and dark. It is also brutally honest. I just felt that the last line of the book left everything unsettled, I guess I like to find closure at the end of a book.But considering what the family went through, or more like going through still, the ending made sense. I don’t know.

I am wondering what to read next. I started the Lives of Others by Neel Mukherjee, but wasnt able to get into it. Maybe I should give it another shot.

Melting

I don’t know if it’s the heat (44 degrees!) or the fact that I am pms-ing (Wow, I talk about my menstrual cycle a lot) but I feel weak and slow. I can barely hold my body up, it just wants to sink into every surface I sit on and curl up into a foetal position. I attempted to work out, I lasted 15 minutes, and now my body feels more jelly-like than ever.

I know the heat has really got to me when I don’t feel like eating a donut or drinking a mug of coffee, both of which are ready and available to me. We have planned a road trip for this weekend, hope the temperature goes down, even if just a bit, by then.

I wonder if I should cook something for dinner, but just the thought of standing over a stove in a hot kitchen makes me sweat. I wonder if all my perspiring means I am losing weight. I wouldn’t mind the summer so much then.

My brain is starting to liquify and I think I need to get off this laptop and drink some ice cold water, also I don’t know what I am writing anymore.

I am…

  • Trying not to take a nap, really not advisable since it’s already 4pm.
  • Re-reading the Adrian Mole series for the gazillionth time. Crazy how much I identify with a Middle England-er, who grew up in Thatcher era and is pedantic,anxious and fussy. And, he makes me laugh.
  • Thinking about making one-pot sambar rice for dinner.
  • Feeling slightly nauseated after having eaten two chocolate chip cookies
  • Relieved that I’ve gotten paid for two stories. Still far from having the bank balance I would like, but feels good to see some money in my account.
  • Reminding self not to spend a significant amount of said money on books and to finish reading the ones I have.
  • Dreaming about a jaunt across Europe — museums, cafes and lovely parks.
  • Telling myself to stop day dreaming and to go bring the clothes in as it looks like rain.

Nap time

I have become quite in favour of siesta time for the past couple of months. My freelance work has dried up for the moment and as much as I read, watch shows and cook, I still find I have a lot of time on my hands. 

There is plenty to do around the house. I could cook more than two dishes a day, dust, clean and re-stock the kitchen shelves, wash the curtains etc. But alas, I am not that domestic. Also it is unbelievably hot here. So come 2.30 pm, I can be found lying in bed with a book, my eyes drooping and before you know it I am sound asleep. Here is my problem with afternoon naps, I can’t just cat-nap for half hour. I end up sleeping for a good two hours. I wake up cranky and sweaty (this heat I tell you!) with a slight headache. 

Worse still I can’t sleep in the night. My active imagination and C’s snoring keeps me company as I lie in bed and by the time I sleep it’s around 1 in the morning, this leads to not being able to get up the next morning and the vicious cycle continues, ad nauseam.

This afternoon, I tried my best to not go and lie in bed. I lasted till 3 pm and gave in. I somehow managed to nap for only half hour. It took everything I had to wake up. Now, to wait and see if the cycle has been broken. Tomorrow, I hope to avoid my afternoon nap completely — lofty goals!