Daily Photo Shoot – Day 19

First and foremost, let me say Happy Birthday to Sarah, my sister. We won’t go into how many years she has lived on this planet, in this lifetime anyway, but just suffice it to say the numbers ONE and FIFTY are pertinent. Have a nice day Sare!

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Sare and Bex + + + + Older Sare

Now, onto my Daily Photo Shoot for Tuesday, 19 February 2013, the subject of which is:

Can One Have Too Many Books?

I already know the answer to that question above… it is “yes” and “no.” Most decidedly.

You see, it all started today with this little gem, a book called Mitz, The Marmoset of Bloomsbury by Sigrid Nunez.

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I found this in my bookshelves today whilst rummaging in there for another book, Diary of a Nobody which I still have not found yet! I had read this book many years ago and loved it. Recently, I ordered the DVD of the same, starring Hugh Bonneville (of Downton Abbey fame), who performed the entire book as a one-man-show which turns out to be really fabulous. Anyway, Paul and I have watched 2 of the 4 episodes of the DVD but I wanted to give the actual book to Paul for reading, but I’ll be darned if I can find it in this house.

So, the Mitz book fell into my hands whilst on this journey and seeing the images of Leonard and Virginia Woolf on the cover, I realized that I’d never read this little book! So downstairs it came to be added to the ever-increasing pile of books by my chair to read. Too many! Yes. One CAN have too many, especially in the “to read” stack!

This little book is about the Woolfs’ Marmoset called Mitz. What a funny pair they were. She is one of my heroes and whenever I stumble upon anything related to Virginia, I get all bogged down in books and videos, etc. As I have done this morning. I get the whole Bloomsbury thing front and center in my brain, the (Dora) Carrington story, Virginia’s sister Vanessa, Lytton Strachey, and all the lovely old eccentric characters that made up that group of friends, lovers, artists and relatives.

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I got lost in that book all over again! But when I pulled the Bloomsbury at Home book out of the shelf, two greeting cards fell out of it. So funny!

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Paul gave me these two cards for our Anniversary on two separate years, one after the other. Here’s the inside:

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I just crack up at Paul whenever I think of that. What are the chances of that happening on two consecutive years?

Anyway, so now the day is half gone and I have yet to read more than the first page of Mitz. I’ve had to get up several times since starting this entry to attend to things and dogs and package deliveries. Oh yes, someone came by with a package and left it at the back door. None other than another book for me to put at the top of my “To-Read” pile: The Collected Stories of Katherine Mansfield,. She was a contemporary of Virginia Woolf, and now I don’t know which to go through first… I am already in the middle of a recent acquisition called The Hundred and Ninety-Nine Steps by Michel Faber, a novel about Whitby, England, and the 199 steps that I’ve loved climbing so many times…which is a good little read so far.

Next on the pile is my almost completed copy of The Haunted Hotel by Wilkie Collins. Under that one is my not-yet-started Mrs. Robinson’s Disgrace by Kate Summerscale, and then The Persephone Book of Short Stories, (from which I’ve only managed to read one story, but what a doozie it was!), not to mention Walt Whitman’s Memoranda During the War, and under that Corvus, A Life with Birds by Esther Woolfson.

Last but not least on the pile immediately to my left here is Ted and I by Gerald Hughes, a book about the early life of Ted Hughes, Sylvia Plath’s husband.

That’s not including the line-up of books standing up next to the pile I just mentioned that are waiting patiently in a queue along the back of the coffee table next to my chair. Oh dear. I am feeling a bit overwhelmed. You’d think, now that I’m retired, that I’d have all this free time to get all this reading done, but something always comes up just when I get all comfy and settled with the book finally open…the TV turned off, and quiet settles over the house. It’s always just then that the dogs hop up and bark out the windows, or Paul comes home and walks in here and sits down with that look on his face that says “stop what you’re doing and listen…” – it’s always something!

I’m going to open Mitz right now and at least read a few pages before I get interrupted again.



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8 Responses to Daily Photo Shoot – Day 19

  1. mz. em says:

    I love your books!


  2. Nina Camic says:

    Reading books is, to me, reason enough to retire ASAP. Work and the internet are both huge interferences in book reading. There is so much of both!

    I’m hoping to transition to Kindle reading, but so far I’ve only read one book electronically. But I really hope I’ll do more that way. It actually is quite nifty not to have heavy books that refuse to stay open on certain pages.

    Anyway, dream on, Nina. Right now, I have to get back to work.


  3. Eric Mayer says:

    Well, if you like a card one year, you’re going to like it the next year too, and I know I probably can’t remember what cards I select from year to year so I can see how it happens.

    As for books…I decided to read some of the Golden Age Detective novels Mary is keen on. So I’ve accumulated an electronic TBR pile of those. So the same period as Virginia Woolf but very different.

    I always found Virginia Woolf an intimidating writer but I finally read To the Lighthouse a couple years ago and was surprised I actually enjoyed it. However, by chance I had read a philosophy book by Bertrand Russell and in pondering the nature of time he used an example which Woolf uses in To the Lighthouse. Coincidence? At any rate, that served as a kind of key for me and, rightly or wrongly, looking at the novel from a philosophical viewpoint it worked for me.

    I’ll read another by her sometime although I am not sure I will understand it.


  4. Rhubarb says:

    Oh, gosh, I know how it goes. You come upon one delicious book and then another and then another. You’d like to sit down and read, just read, but one thing, then something else, intrudes, and … the pile awaits. At least it doesn’t seem as though you’ll run out of reading material any time soon!


  5. sandy freel says:

    You read just like I do …a pile by side of chair or bed.
    I have a few going at once also .
    Happy birthday to your sis.
    Great card Paul gave you two times…better than no card showing up 🙂


  6. TopsyTurvy says:

    I’m loving the cards from Paul. And it’s okay that he chose the same card two years in a row. That just shows he’s being genuine about who he is and how much he loves you!


  7. Bex says:

    Hi Jane…I just finished editing my entry so it’s spiffed up a bit now. I’ll run right over to your site and see who you are as I forget things very easily these days!

    Ah yes, that box of books to donate.. I had a bunch of those back a year or two ago and I asked a good friend if she wanted to come by and go thru them and take whatever she wanted… turned out that she and her partner do a lot of volunteer work for several churches and they always are having book sales so she took the whole lot of my books!

    Every now and then I will be looking around for one and think “now I hope I didn’t give that away….” but it’s hopeless to keep track anymore.

    Thanks for dropping by and welcome to Crow Cottage.


  8. Jane says:

    Hello Bex, I must heartily apologise for my tardiness in replying to your very kind comment on my blog, I’ve at last managed to find my way over here. I really enjoyed reading your post today, I’m guilty of hoarding more and more books to read as well,and I too get stuck as to which I should pick up first.. it’s a pleasant conundrum though! There has been a box of books by my front door supposedly being taken to the charity shop all week and I keep thinking, ‘I could keep a couple of those…’
    Ah well, very nice to make your acquaintance.

    Kind regards,


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