I don’t know about you but I’m done. I am done with the snow, the cold and the fog. And most of all, I am done with COVID dictating what, where and when I can safely do things. I am done with the doom and gloom offered daily by our TV newscasters and the fear they perpetuate.
I need a change. Unlike some of my snowbird friends, I am not going to Arizona. I have family and friends there but no desire to go.
I checked out local Pacific Northwest train excursions and cruise lines but I would have to get off both to see the sights, so that doesn’t work. Too cold, foggy and there is always the possibility of snow in February.
So, what is left?
Books have always taken me to new and exotic places. I love autobiographies and historical novels. I am fascinated by the way people are portrayed and how they think. And I get the chance to exercise my brain if it happens to be a mystery.
I recently heard one school district, located to our north, just banned what had previously been required reading: Their freshmen won’t be reading To Kill a Mockingbird this year.
Banning any book makes me very nervous. Especially when said book is a classic, but I was somewhat placated by the fact they didn’t ban the book completely. I happen to believe history, our history, should be learned from and that can’t happen if it is changed, modified or cleaned up. History may not be pretty or ideal but it offers lessons on how to avoid repeating the same mistakes over and over.
I often have more than one book going at a time. Currently, I am enjoying John Grisham’s Camino Island. It is not about Camano Island, Washington, but rather a much warmer locale which makes me feel warm and cozy. A good author always transports me inside their story and I become very visual. The people come alive and I see their faces, homes, and anything else brilliantly described by the storyteller.
The second book I’m flipping between was a gift from a dear friend after my sweet Bambi crossed over the Rainbow Bridge. It’s called The Book of Animals, Healing Wisdom for the Animal Kingdom, by Kelly Hampton, I turn to this book when I am feeling down or sad and it never fails to lift my spirits and take me to a better place.
My neighborhood has a tiny library box where my neighbors and I can trade and enjoy books. We simply take one out and put one in.
The JOLT lists where you can find several dozen of these library boxes in our Library Guide, which we update every so often. If you have access to one and haven’t checked it out, maybe you should. Just knowing what your neighbors enjoy reading can be interesting.
And of course, the most magical places in our communities are the Timberland Libraries – in Tumwater, Lacey, Olympia, Capital Mall and, starting Feb. 8, Hawks Prairie. We can learn, imagine, and meet fascinating characters in every setting and situation imaginable from these places.
So here I shall be, in my favorite chair with my current book(s), until the weather warms up, the trees and flowers start to bud and the sun, however briefly, returns.
Kathleen Anderson writes this column each week from her home in Olympia. Contact her at kathleen@theJOLTnews.com or post your comment below.
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