Posts Tagged ‘books’

“I travel not to go anywhere, but to go. The great affair is to move.” – Robert Louis Stevenson


Where the road leads, I followed. This one let to the top of Mesa Verde in Colorado. — Photo by Pat Bean

There are needs, and then there are NEEDS

I know what it means to have a tugging in your heart that must be answered. A need to be loved, when I thought I wasn’t, was the first. Fulfilling that need had both good and bad consequences, but my children, their children, and their children made the journey worthwhile.

"I Married Adenture" by Osa Johnson.

“I Married Adventure” by Osa Johnson.

The second, the one that defined me as the wondering-wanderer, started at about age 12 when I read Osa Johnson’s “I Married Adventure.” From the first pages of that book until forever,  traveling to see the world has been in my blood. Exactly how I wanted to see North America firmed up after I read William Least Heat Moon’s “Blue Highways.

The third thing that tugged at me waited until I was a young mother with young children, all of whom had given me a very vexing day. My 6-year-old son had taught his younger brothers how to climb the backyard fence, then he and his 8-year-old sister had engaged in serious sibling rivalry all day. The youngest boy, meanwhile,  had gotten into the sugar bowl and had tracked the sweet granules all over the house.

I was close to being a sobbing mess when my 4-year-old son gifted me with a stemless yellow flower. The adoring look in his eyes turned what had been a shadowed day into one of bright sunshine. Never mind that he had stolen the flower from the neighbor’s yard.

blue-highways-2At about 2 a.m. the next morning, I woke up and felt this burning need to write about how that yellow flower had affected me. From that minute forward, I have needed to write as much as I needed to breathe.

Perhaps that is why when I learned about Steven Newman’s book, “Worldwalk,” in which he wrote about his four-year walk around the world, I knew it was a book I had to read.

I quickly discovered that the 1989 book –which details Steve’s optimistic 15,000-mile trek (of course he took boats where he couldn’t walk) across five continents and 20 countries, with only what would fit in a backpack — was not just not available on Kindle, it was out of print.

Thanks to the Internet, however, I found a rag-eared, stained paperback, copy for which I paid $1 plus $3.99 in shipping charges. The book didn’t disappoint, and I highly recommend it to any reader who believes the good in this world outweighs the bad, and who has an insatiable need to see the world, even if from an armchair.  

In fact, if you’re the first to request my copy, by privately messaging me on Facebook or e-mail, I’ll mail it to you free.  I love sharing books I have read.

Bean’s Pat:  Peregrine falcons http://tinyurl.com/b7hasb7 If you want to feel proud of yourself as a human being who cares that we share the land with wildlife, this is a bird that should help. Peregrine falcons, once nearing extinction, made a tremendous comeback after we humans started caring – and banned the use of DDT.

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“Take a music bath once or twice a week for a few seasons. You will find it is to the soul what a water bath is to the body.” Oliver Wendell Holmes

Adventures with Pepper: Day 49-50

I finally maneuvered through Nashville’s big-city traffic, which I hit at rush hour, and made my way to the Nashville Country RV Park in the outskirt city of Millersville.

Reminders that Nashville was a musical city abounded. — Photo by Pat Bean

I had just enough energy to hook up and take Pepper for a walk around the dog-friendly park before fixing myself some comfort food — a can of Campbell’s chicken noodle soup, a can of Ro-Tel tomatoes and diced green chilies and a generous portion of sour cream – before collapsing with an audible Travis McGee book, “Nightmare in Pink.”

I had decided to reread these John D. MacDonald books that began in 1964 with “The Deep Blue Goodbye,” but this time listening to them in the audible.com unabridged versions that had only recently been released.

I was enjoying them as much this second-time around, and despite how tired I had been, I stayed awake until 2 a.m. and the end of the book. Pepper, as usual, woke me at 6 a.m. with chin kisses begging for her morning walk.

Afterwards, I gave her a pork-twist bone and crawled back in bed until eight o’clock. A little later, I strolled down to the office to see if there were any tours of Nashville that I could take.

While pumpkin and mum displays reminded everyone that it was fall. — Photo by Pat Bean

There were, and even better was the fact that a Gray Line’s shuttle would pick me up at the park for them. I signed up for a half-day tour the next day, and another half-day tour the day after.

There were full-day options, but I hadn’t wanted to leave Pepper alone that long.

I spent the rest of the day relaxing and taking frequent short walks with Pepper, who found several canine companions along the way who would play with her. As I said, it was a dog friendly park.

That night, I attended the park’s dinner and music outdoor program. It was Nashville after all.

Book Report: On the road today so as to have Thanksgiving with my son, D.C. Hopefully I’ll get in my hour of writing later this afternoon. I had to do my blog for American Profile Magazine earlier this morning. It’s on Wall Drug. You can check it out at: http://blogs.americanprofile.com/

The Wondering Wanderer’s blog pick of the day.

Bean’s Pat: Retiree Diary http://tinyurl.com/boy3dru Take an armchair tour of China’s mystical mountains. I loved these photos.

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A Sleep-In Day for Maggie and Me

“A book is the only place in which you can examine a fragile thought without breaking it, or explore an explosive idea without fear it will go off in your face. It is one of the few havens remaining where a man’s mind can get both provocation and privacy. ~Edward P. Morgan

Books and Authors

I couldn't resist this picture of Maggie, all snuggled up and sleeping in with her Teddy Bear yesterday morning. -- Photo by Pat Bean

It was only 42 degrees when I woke up yesterday morning. I snuggled down into my covers, reluctant to start the day with the sunrise as is my usual mode of operation. Instead I reached for my Kindle. I had read Earlene Fowler’s “Spider Web” after getting into bed, before reluctantly putting it down to get some sleep.

But this morning, since I wanted to stay snuggled up, I begin listing to my audible copy of “The Help” by Kathryn Stockett.. I had a hard time putting it down to finally get up and fix coffee about 10 a.m. Reading is bed is my idea of sleeping in on a cold morning.

By the time I got up, the day had warmed to 70 degrees. Maggie, however, who is the true late riser, was still snuggled up on the couch with her Teddy Bear by her side and the quilt I had thrown over her. I couldn’t resist a picture of her.

A good read

I also couldn’t resist continuing to listen to “The Help,” and did little else yesterday except that. I think I needed a down day – and I’m glad I took it. . I finished the book today when I was working in the entrance kiosk here at Lake Walcott State Park.

The book takes place in the early 1960s in Jackson, Mississippi, a time when a lot of history was being made, most of it not good at all. The book took me back to those days as it followed the clandestine activities of a young white women and two older black maids. I highly recommend the book, which I understand was recently made into a movie.

Think about taking a down day to read it. .And then let me know if you had as much trouble putting it down until it was finished as I did.

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