Another Monday Morning

Ok. Where are we walking to now?

It’s been a fairly uneventful week around here so I did get some reading finished up. Our photography club starts up meetings this coming week so working on a couple of photos for the digital challenges. Ollie is also doing better and has a quick checkup on Thursday at the vet’s to see if his ear infection has cleared. We have had a day at the beach so he is happy. Our weather is spring like and you’d have no idea it is actually summer. Cool days and quite windy. The clouds are good for photography but not much else as every time I decide to take the camera out for a walk the rain comes pouring down or the wind is gale force.

I could not stop diving into this book. It requires a deep dive.

So let’s get started with the books. The first book I finished was Robert MacFarlane’s book Underland: A Deep Time Journey. This was a five star read for me. I really enjoyed it. The blurb from Good Reads states:

In Underland, Robert Macfarlane (British) delivers an epic exploration of the Earth’s underworlds as they exist in myth, literature, memory, and the land itself. Traveling through the dizzying expanse of geologic time—from prehistoric art in Norwegian sea caves, to the blue depths of the Greenland ice cap, to a deep-sunk “hiding place” where nuclear waste will be stored for 100,000 years to come—Underland takes us on an extraordinary journey into our relationship with darkness, burial, and what lies beneath the surface of both place and mind.

Global in its geography and written with great lyricism, Underland speaks powerfully to our present moment. At once ancient and urgent, this is a book that will change the way you see the world.

Yes, it sounds dry but I assure you it is anything but. It had so much information of which I knew nothing about, it had suspense, it had calm, isolation and beauty. It really does let you see our earth in an entirely different light and I really loved it. It is a book I would consider reading again.

The second book I finished this week was Away With the Penguins by Hazel Prior. This is what I call a fluffy book. Fluffy books are books that are comforting, easy reading and entertaining. They don’t require a lot of brain power.

Not for serious readers but great for a bit of fluff. It does have a good environmental messages though.

The story goes:

Veronica McCreedy is about to have the journey of a lifetime . . .

Veronica McCreedy lives in a mansion by the sea in Scotland. She loves a nice cup of Darjeeling tea whilst watching a good wildlife documentary. And she’s never seen without her ruby-red lipstick.

Although these days Veronica is rarely seen by anyone because, at 85, her days are spent mostly at home, alone.

She can be found either collecting litter from the beach (‘people who litter the countryside should be shot’), trying to locate her glasses (‘someone must have moved them’) or shouting
instructions to her assistant, Eileen (‘Eileen, door!’).

Veronica doesn’t have family or friends nearby. Not that she knows about, anyway . . . And she has no idea where she’s going to leave her considerable wealth when she dies.

But today . . . today Veronica is going to make a decision that will change all of this. (Good Reads)

I didn’t like Veronica at first when I began this book. Did not like her at all. But I don’t think you are supposed to. Then I learned about her life. She lives in Scotland and her memories go back to World War II. I almost gave this book up until….. things began to happen.

Did I mention she ends up in Antarctica?

It was fun and I know I will remember the characters for a very long time as they were very well developed. The book is one that gets much better as the writer gets more and more into it.

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I now have letters of author initials M and P completed in my TBR Author Alphabet challenge. Time to pick another random choice from the TBR.

Our photo club challenge has us choosing two photos we took in 2020 and ones we thought were pretty good. These are my two entires. The Waterfront is my favourite of the two but I’m entering the Covid sign one as I think it is important and it documents 2020.

A Sign of the Times

Hobart, Tasmania- Waterfront at Night

My new year now begins Thursday here which is the Wednesday inauguration day of Joe Biden in the U.S. I will be watching it. I will again be thankful Trump is going to be gone and I will then focus on everything else in life besides politics and Covid which have been all consuming. We are fortunate in Tasmania as we have not had any cases in the community for months now. I’m not sure when vaccinations will be available here but I have heard murmurs of March. Who knows? I do think of those in other countries who are doing it so tough. My heart goes out to you. Stay well.

I’ll be back soon.

Author: TravellinPenguin

I live a retired life in Tasmania, Australia. I love books, travel, animals, photography, motor biking and good friends. I indulge in all these activities with the little Travellin' Penguin who has now shared five continents with me. We love book shops, photography walks and time with friends as all our family is in USA and Canada. I enjoy visitors to my blog so hope you'll stop by.

27 thoughts on “Another Monday Morning”

  1. I’ve been consumed by politics and Covid, too, though lately I’ve been trying to cut down on news. That seems to be a good thing. Fingers crossed for an uneventful transition of power and a glass of champagne Wednesday evening… the trump era cannot end fast enough. That’s also a great mix of book… both sound interesting. Very nice photos, too. Have a good week!

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  2. Good to hear your little dog is on the mend. Macfarlane is a good guide to the natural (and human-made) world, especially its less obvious features. I think of his work on Holloways on many of our local rural walks, which often include sunken byways and lanes.

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  3. Thank you for an encouraging post. I am happy to hear that you are mostly safe from the virus. Some times it is quite difficult to imagine a world without it in the future. We all hope for the best and a good vaccine.
    We read Underland in our book club. It is very seldom that I don’t finish a book I am reading with a book club. However, this is one of them. I just could not read it. It was something in the way it was writing. A sort of passive tense that did not engage me at all. I still have the book and try to read a chapter from time to time, but the writing is, for me, totally uninspiring. Most of the people in my book club loved it, but it is not for me.
    It makes for more interesting discussions though when we don’t feel the same about a book.

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  4. Good to hear that Ollie is improving enough to go bounding about on the beach. Your photography club is meeting face to face?? That must be so wonderful. I can’t see any groups here being to meet until at least March since the virus is so rampant right now

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    1. Karen…We are very fortunate here as our island has a big moat around it and our king is not letting the drawbridge down very often. Everyone who arrives is in quarantine for 2 weeks and police monitor it quite strictly so life is pretty normal as long as we don’t leave the kingdom.

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      1. Your Prime Minister is one of the most impressive politicians I’ve seen for many years. She went fast and hard on the covid strategy and its worked

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      2. Karen.. Jacinda Adern is prime minister of New Zealand. I’M in Tasmania and our prime minister is appalling. He supports Trump and makes,promises of which he never keeps. Can’t wait for him to be gone.

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  5. I’m wondering how much underworld SF I’ve read. Journey to the Centre of the Earth. A recent novel by WA poet John Kinsella. One where cities in the US moved into nuclear shelters and the politicians ‘forgot’ to tell them they could come out.

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    1. I haven’t read a lot of science fiction so I can’t say I’ve had this experience of being forgotten underground. Underground is non fiction so perhaps a bit more serious but the books you have read do sound fun.

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  6. i wrote a series of posts on underground civilizations earlier last year and this book seems like one i should have read… so i will: tx… your photographs are so detailed, even in the farther parts; i don’t know how you do that!

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    1. I think you would find this book fascinating. I was surprised at how much I enjoyed it. There is so much to it. As to the photo…. several years of practice, finally getting the camera settings correct and a sturdy tripod. Thank you for your comment.

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