So California has rain and we have sun…Hooray.  I suppose.  The fearful mudslides may now materialize in CA, but I hope not.

IMG_0061We had a smidgen more snow yesterday…all gone today.  I added a new weather APP to my iPhone so I know the weather report faster than ever…as if I can’t look out the window.  APP #1 was stuck on Austin Texas for a while but now on Washington DC where it should be. APP #2 is still stuck on NYC, but I expect it will sort itself out soon. I also downloaded a local county APP which looks promising….See a tree down, report it, need snow removal report it. You might say I am APP Happy.


This week, having completed my February Challenge, the Margaret MacMillan book on the period before WWI, I began reading Christopher Clark’s The Sleepwalkers: How Europe Went to War in 1914  (both listed below in the Goodreads thingy).  Clark looks at the period before the war, and begins by examining problems in the Balkans. (More on this interesting book in a later post.)

Okay, I know the Balkans are not everyone’s favorite topic, but during the 1990s, I read a dozen or so books on Yugoslavia, Bosnia, Serbia, Sarajevo etc. (In those days, I worked in the Ethnic statistics subject area at the Census Bureau and was preparing foreign-born categories for the census.  War torn areas always produce ethnic groups in the US.)

Among the books I read were:

1/ Bridge Over the Drina, a work of fiction about Yugoslavia by Ivo Andrić who won the Nobel Prize for Literature.

2/ The Haunted Land: Facing Europe’s Ghosts After Communism, by Tina Rosenberg a journalist;

3/ Bosnia and Hercegovina: A Tradition Betrayed, by Robert Donia and John Fine, professors of history at Michigan.

I want to read Tuchman’s Guns of August and Samantha Powers Problem from Hell.  We were assigned the latter in a history class on Human Rights, but I never finished the book. I have both on my Kindle, but won’t return to the latter before the end of the year.  I plan to read Tuchman’s latest book The Proud Tower: Portraits of the World Before the Great War in a month or so, and then I may read her book on the Great War in August. I was going to read MacMillan’s 1919 in July, but will put that off until later…maybe 2019?


So, am I doing much besides reading and doctor’s appointments?  Not really.  I had my quarterly blood draw yesterday and see my bone surgeon tomorrow.  The phlebotomist noted, “Unlike the ninety-nine percent of my patients who look away when I draw blood, you don’t.” Blood is blood, I said, and I thought to myself, I raised kids, do you know how much blood I saw?

Except for mysteries, we don’t watch much TV, and when we do, I am usually crocheting my new Afghan, not looking at the TV.  I sorted out my yarn two nights ago and sent Hannah a box of miscellaneous skeins today.  I suppose I am a homebody these days, and I like it like that.

Tomorrow’s dinner = fruited pork roast from the new weight watchers cook book.  I’ll get it into the slow cooker before I see my bone surgeon.



20 thoughts on “Miscellany

  1. Your crochet commandment makes crocheting sounds a bit like gardening! I have four weather links at my fingertips, but no matter which one I check, the weather is still too cold and wintry.


  2. It all sounds perfect to me.
    I didn’t know Tuchmann was still writing. (Oops, she isn’t, because she died a long time ago – I just looked her up) I only read two of her books.

    I just got the the Gutenberg Project app and have been reading ‘Historia Calamitatum’, Abelard’s litany of the ills done him. The letters are next. An unlikely reading matter but as a filler in between thrillers and literary tomes this works fine.

    I hope the sun will shine for you.


  3. Winter just refuses to leave you, doesn’t it? I believe I’m at the point where I’m overly APP happy. Have a great weekend! By the way, I still turn away when I’m having my blood drawn, no matter how much blood I’ve seen.


    • I’m burying this message to you in an older post because I don’t have your e-mail and I like to keep my trips private… just in case. I’d rather the world not know when we’re gone from the house. We’ll be going to Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand and then Bangladesh where we’ll spend time with our son who is now working there for Johns Hopkins. I’ve got posts scheduled to go up, but won’t be able to visit until after we settle down again after our return. Take care and stay as warm as you can. It was cool over here today. It was a surprising 60 degrees this morning. I know. I know. My daughter has already told me it’s 20 in Chicago.


  4. Have tried biographies but get fed up after all while – no matter how famous some people are their life stories (written by themselves or another) can be very Me Me Me after a while. Fiction along with Travel – Craft – Gardening and Cats are what i tend to gravitatate to these days. Looking at some of the ‘classics’ I wasn’t interested in years ago – read Lord of the Flies (William Golding) last year and thoroghly enjoyed it.
    And of course the Crochet quote could easily be a Knitting one – don’t ask about my experiences with wool, knitting needles and patterns. I certainly wont tell you 🙂


    • I know what you mean about biographies, although I read several for my history courses: Winston Churchill, Baldwin, Thatcher, Lloyd George, etc. lord of the flies- saw part of the movie…awful. I think they ate the fat kid.


    • I read many nature and gardening books in the past: John Muir, Henry Mitchell, Allen Lacey, Michael Pollen, etc. The last book on the environment I read was Charles Fishman’s Big Thirst about water conservation.

      I read much fiction in the past, especially when I was commuting to work on the bus and Metro. I still read some fiction, but only as a respite from history. I get bored with fiction very quickly, then return to history.


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