1. I'm still here and still sorting. However, I was so encouraged by the response to my post on weeding books that I went back and managed to eliminate several hundred more books. They were all delivered to our local library this past weekend and I am relieved to note that the remaining books will all fit in the available space once the process is complete.
2. My step-son and his wife were here last weekend and we had a lovely and relaxing visit, with some interesting excursions, much companionable visiting time, good food, a gift exchange and a shot of pineapple tequila. I was given this book, which I had been lusting after for some time, and there are several recipes that will be appearing on our dining table in the very near future.
3. The next weeding project is my cookbook collection, although I am still welcoming this new cookbook. There will not be as heavy of weeding here, but there still seems to be some chaff, and I will probably eliminate most of the bread-baking section as I no longer make bread and am not likely to resume doing so given my celiac status. This does not mean that I will eliminate all pastry and dessert options however.
4. One section of books that has been isolated from the rest is a cabinet of books to read, mostly books that I have purchased in the last couple of years with full intentions of reading, as well as a group of books that I wish to reread before giving them away. The latter group included Isak Dineson's Out of Africa, which I just finished reading and sent it on its way, although I did have a few moments of regret following that move. I only had a paperback copy though so it pains me less than some books, and I feel certain that I shall be able to find it again should the desire to read it recur. Of course this is the big point for me now, that there is no reason, unless a book is difficult to find or personally meaningful in some way, to keep books which I can get digitally or from a public library.
But back to Dineson. As was true the first time I read this book, 30 some-odd years ago, I initially found it hard to get into the flow of the story, but eventually Dineson's prose, her lyrical way with words, and her charming observations and descriptions won me over. The high point of this particular reading occurred one morning when I found myself sitting out on the edge of the deck watching the sunrise with a cup of coffee as I was reading Dineson's description of coming across a lion and and killing it in the dark, only to return at sunrise and find another lion. When I write it here, it all sounds brutal and cold, but it is not so in the book, and as I read that passage I was linked through sunrise in the Hudson Valley with a sunrise in Africa in a time long ago, all through the magic of words and imagination.
5. Today I washed the front door, the door frame and the front porch, then moved on to cleaning the windows above and around the front door. Now everything is welcoming and sparkly clean and I feel a certain lightness in my spirits.