I love the snow! Big, dry flakes, billowy confetti clouds, and everything in between. Sometimes floating and slowly swirling, sometimes blowing and frenzied, gentling all sounds, coating the leafless trees and shrubs and the dry brown fields, turning all in to a wonderland of light and sparkle. And of course opening the door to endless outdoor winter activities!
When Theron and I moved to Bayfield from Northern California, my family and friends worried about me. Theron had grown up in Wisconsin. They were assured he knew what he was getting. I had attended law school here but waaaay down South in Madison. Not the Northwoods. They asked me if I knew that temps plunged well below zero, that it got really dark and that it snowed over 8’ in the winter? I said, absolutely! I can’t wait! And so the first few years, it did, and we loved it. This year, it didn’t or at least it hasn’t. But, as of today, we’re finally getting our first real taste and it’s delicious!
But, snow or no snow, we kept on reading. Tsar Peter and King Charles XII concluded their final climactic battle in their longstanding and brutal war, and I needed to put Peter the Great aside for a bit to concentrate on our January and February AIB Book Club selections -- The Sense of an Ending by Julian Barnes and Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson. When I first read The Sense of an Ending I really didn’t think I got it. Barnes’ novel had won the 2011 Man Booker prize and was critically acclaimed but, as often happens, I didn’t see what the critics saw. Not until I read it again. It is a short book and I highly recommend reading it twice. I might even read it a third time. I have already read many paragraphs repeatedly. There is a lot in this book that unfolds differently and more deeply with each pass through it.
Our group met on January 3 to discuss it. I think I can safely say that all of the 11 or 12 folks that attended liked it very much, many as much as I did and most didn’t even have to read it twice! We had a very interesting discussion that, like the book, morphed and deepened each time we revisited a certain event or scenario in the book. Book Club has been a really fun for me. It’s a great way for an eclectic bunch of us to get together to share different perspectives and gain insight on subjects that we might not normally even think to discuss with others.
And now I’ve just finished Steve Jobs. Wow. I’m really glad I read it. I used to work in that environment and even with some of the people in the book, but I don’t think that was relevant to my appreciation of the incredible story it tells of a man and how the birth and development of a technological revolution led to a societal revolution that has altered our world dramatically and forever.