Friday, December 25, 2009

White-out, Read-in

Merry Christmas, December 25, 2009. The weather radio said this would be an historic weather event. We are in a blizzard with white-out conditions. The south part of our pasture has disappeared into a haze of white, and we are not thinking of leaving the house. Well, actually, Dave did leave the house to feed Samson, our donkey. It was an adventure at 9:00 a.m. this morning, with hip-deep drifts and wind gusts of 45 mph. It will be worse if/when he goes out again before dark. I am hoping that he will so I won't have to! We have about 18 hours to go on the blizzard conditions according to the radio.
So, if you are stuck inside it is a perfect time to catch up on your reading. I stopped in at the library earlier in the week and picked up a few books. The first one I finished was Rumpole Christmas Stories by John Mortimer. We used to love to watch Rumpole of the Bailey on Masterpiece Theater (I think) anyway, on Public television. The books are even better. Unfortunately, John Mortimer died earlier this year, so there won't be any new Rumpole books. This book is a collection of 5 short stories featuring Horace Rumpole, the London barrister and his wife, Hilda (She Who Must Be Obeyed) during the Christmas season. Rumpole does his usual good job of sleuthing and upholding justice as he is dragged to a spa for a Christmas holiday where Hilda wants him to lose some weight (highly unlikely), recognizes a Santa whom he had previously defended, and 3 other great tales. It is a quick and very enjoyable read.
The next book I finished is the Nanny Diaries by Emma McLaughlin and Nicola Kraus. I read a review of their new book Nanny Returns, but saw the first book on the shelf so decided to start with it. It is fiction, but is based on the authors' experiences as nannies in New York. It is disturbing to think that there are children being raised by such incompetent rich folk as Mr. and Mrs. X, and hopefully, the reality is not so bad, but I have a feeling that many of the situations depicted actually happend. Really, the problem is that Mr. and Mrs. X are not raising their child, Grayer, but paying their succession of nannies to do the job. They are more concerned with how their 4-year-old looks, how much time he spends at the Guggenheim, his French and Latin lessons, and where he will attend pre-school (so that he can get into the right college) than they are with spending time with him. I will look for the sequel.

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