We’ve had my son and his wife to stay over Christmas. Both are keen readers and last night saw four people sitting with open books in front of a blank, silent TV. A quiet and very enjoyable evening, long periods of silence broken occasionally by patches of conversation! Is that what we did before TV?
My wife has started the first of Stieg Larsson’s crime thriller trilogy: “The girl with the dragon tattoo”. I’m a bit ahead of her and am devouring the third book in his trilogy. Having lived in Stockholm for four years, I am loving the Swedish setting, especially all the street and place names. Probably I should have exercisied more restraint, taken things a bit more slowly, because the next book on my Christmas reading list is “Aquaculture Law and Policy – towards principled access and operations” edited by David Vanderswaag and Gloria Chao. I am not sure that will be quite as gripping!
At that particular moment my daughter-in-law was reading “Dragonlance Adventures” – a guide book in the D&D series given to my son many years ago as a school prize. An enlightened school, Nayland College (here in Nelson). Prizewinners were given a book token and a sticker to put on the inside front cover of their selection, whereupon it was returned to be presented at the end of year prizegiving. She found his choice amusing. It was once part of a vast set of D&D books (my son was a great saver of pocket money). The others I had sold on Trademe (our eBay) about 6 years ago, when he was living in the USA (for astonishing prices I might add).
My son was reading “The elegant universe” by Brian Green. He had covered quantum mechanics and the theory of relativity (and their incompatibility at their intersection) and was up to string theory. I loved that author’s ability to make difficult topics, such as what a six- or nine-dimensional space might look like, accessible for mere mortals. I’ve put that book on my list for re-reading (I’m afraid my retention is deteriorating a bit with advancing years!) That list also includes Jared Diamond’s book “Collapse”.
Amongst my Christmas presents was a cookbook – “Go Fish” by Al Brown. A very considerate gift aimed not only at my love of fishing but also at helping an experienced and competent CEO become at least an adequate cook (a stage not yet attained). A book entitled “How to shop at supermarkets – a guide for husbands” might be helpful too! Getting the fish is no problem – we have NZ’s best fish shop on our very doorstep. But that’s for another post.