Saturday, December 26, 2009

I Bought Myself a Present

I love to watch how the day, tired as it is, lags away reluctantly, and hates to be called yesterday so soon. 
Nathaniel Hawthorne, House of the Seven Gables

Do you buy presents for yourself? Each year I find myself thinking that around Christmas time, the robes and slippers are the most luxurious, the colognes and perfumes are the most enticing, and the earrings I could never find are suddenly everywhere.

But what I buy for myself most often are books.

A couple of weeks ago, I happened upon a reference to When Wanderers Cease to Roam -- A Traveler's Journal of Staying Put by Vivian Swift.  It wasn't in the library, and it had not been in the bookstore since 2008. So, sight unseen and fingers crossed,  mailorder -- here I come.  When the book arrived on my doorstep a few days ago, I hardly had time to open the box, much less give it a thorough review, but I knew at a glance I would not be disappointed. It is hand-lettered, beautifully illustrated with watercolor and drawings, and contains quotes, lines of poetry, and the author's observations of her daily life.

As an example,  some of the entries are:  Small Pleasures Worth Staying Home For; Things That Keep You Warm in January; Tea Cup Travel; Rain Book; A Walker's Lost and Found; A Memoir of Close Calls in Three Miniscule Chapters;  Kinds of Snow. (The above Nathaniel Hawthorne quote is from one of the September pages.)

I wish I could keep a journal just like this one. I wish I could draw. I wish I could paint. But maybe, if I wish upon a star....

Of course, as I think about it, it's obvious!  I can make my own notes of small pleasures worth staying home for, the things that keep me warm in January, and I can look for treasures as I take a walk. The painting, however, -- well, that's another story.

When Wanderers Cease to Roam: A Traveler's Journal of Staying Put

When Wanderers Cease to Roam: A Traveler's Journal of Staying Put

1 comment:

  1. Oh Carol, I've GOT to have this book!!! Sounds woooonderful.

    Judy Jackson