Friday, January 04, 2008

Baby It's Cold Outside

It's officially wintertime around here with the mercury falling down to the *gasp* to around 16 last night and barely cracking the freezing mark during the day. Admittedly this doesn't hold a candle to what my mother is enduring up north in Vermont, but it's cold for around here.

This to me is ideal reading weather. I burned through two books on our travels and both were excellent reads. The first one was "Sudden Sea: The Great Hurricane of 1938" by R.A. Scotti, I found it at my mother's house. She always has a few good books scattered about. I'm a weather junkie (as so is my mother) and my mother clearly remembers this particular blow and has told us tales of it. She was 9 years old and she and her family lived on the shore just north of Boston. It was literally the first hurricane she had ever experienced. Their first indication of how big a blow it was going to be when the barometer 's bottom fell out. My grandfather exclaimed "Jesus Christ" and then they all hurried to batten down the hatches. My uncle, stupidly and on his own, decided to save his father's new boat by riding out the storm. He lost control of the boat and nearly lost his life swimming back to shore. The boat in the end grounded and was stove in on one side.

The story is well researched and written with photographs documenting the absolute destruction of the Long Island Express. We have come a long way in weather forecasting and it was interesting to learn that the hurricane of '38 was the first one to hit the Northeast in over a hundred years. The weather pattern is certainly far different now.

Next up was "Water for Elephants: a Novel" by Sara Gruen. A work of complete fiction that completely draws you in to the life of a traveling circus from the perspective of the pseudo vet (he is and he isn't a vet, you have to read the book to find out the whole story). It's funny, tragic, heartbreaking and racy. Not something for the boys to read. It was at my in-laws and I tore through it in one night. My father in-law recommended it to me and I picked it up as something to read while doing laundry. I ended up staying up far to late to finish it as we were leaving the next day. I was a bit drawn out and my eyes were feeling a little gritty the next day, but it was worth it.

So that's what I did for winter break.

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