How many books are too many for the Thistle? More than twelve, I'm thinking. That's six for me and six for Ed.
So here we are narrowing down two floor-to-ceiling walls of books to twelve books. Thank goodness for computers providing us with endless reading material in the absence of our library, but still, carrying only twelve books seems like an impossibly difficult book reduction task.
My first two books will be writing books. I am not a good enough writer, nor do I have a big enough ego (really!) to think my blogging will have the popularity to attract hundreds of readers. It is, after all, simply a blog to keep our family and friends up to date on our travel activities and a diary for us to remember the adventure. Nevertheless, I don't want my postings to bore my followers. Improving my writing, mostly for my own personal satisfaction, but also for you, my family and friends, even if there are only a dozen or so of you, is high on my list of desires.
So here are some choices. Bird by Bird Some Instructions on Writing and Life by Anne Lamott and Stephen King A Memoir of the Craft on Writing. I've read both books and I intend to read both again and again so they will travel with me. I'm also reading Travels with Charley by John Steinbeck. How did he pull off such a fabulous travel log about traveling across the United States in a van with his dog, Charley? Aside, that is, from being John Steinbeck. Scholars are now criticizing the book, claiming John Steinbeck didn't have the conversations or experiences he claimed he had, but I still found the book a good read many years ago and so far I'm finding it a good read this time around as well. Besides, fiction or not, Steinbeck's style is a pretty hot model for writing well. But I digress. Travels with Charley will not travel with me, except on my I-Pad.
I also have my heart set on learning to sketch, having been interested in sketching for years but not sticking with it long enough to progress satisfactorily. Two of my books will be sketch books, The Sketch by Robert S. Oliver and Drawing Workbook, a Complete Course in Ten Lessons, by Jill Bays. With practice perhaps you will see sketches from time-to-time posted on the blog.
That leaves me with two more books. Should I learn more about photography and pack a book on how to take better photographs? Do I want a book to pursue my Indian flute playing, another activity that is stale and neglected right now? But what about a bird book and a wild flower book? If I did a photography book, Indian flute book, bird book and plant book, that would make eight books. Could I sneak my book collection up to eight?
When I shared my six or eight book thinking with Mr. Ed, he grinned and laughed and said, "Eight!!"
"Books are the quietest and most constant of friends; they are the most accessible and wisest of counselors, and the most patient of teachers."
~ Charles William Eliot