Since her departure, I've been up to no good: mostly hanging out at home with the siblings; helping out Mom and Dad; eating our housekeeper's cooking (manna from Heaven I tell you, especially after having to cook for myself all summer); getting back into the running regiment (walking at least 40 minutes a day to and from the metro took all incentive to be on a serious schedule away); working on my book review for the Times (Rach, my hatred for the main character is slightly diminished by now haha); reading books I'll be reviewing for the school paper (currently a book on Pete Seeger); reading books I shan't be reviewing (Dante--Hell, Dorothy Sayer's translation); seeing friends and family; generally loving on Cincinnati.
It's past 1 a.m. but I do not have to report for duty tomorrow till around 11, so I'm up working on the book review. It comes so slowly. I've got pages and pages of notes and I've been leafing through the book again, but I need to focus more specifically into the book and not get too analytical. One of my main quandaries with the book is that the main character's utter disdain for her husband's religion (Judaism) when she herself seeks Truth through literature. I went over to one of my closest friends from home/ high school Sarah's house for dinner last night and her mom played Devil's Advocate with me over things I'm struggling with concerning the novel. It was great and I hope it shows through in the review. I want to send it into the Times by the end of this week because I've got plenty to do before school starts up.
I read "Rome Sweet Home" in one day this past week and it was really, really good. My grandbig Geneva mentioned it was one of her favorite books and I knew we had a copy or two at home so I picked it up and just read. It's written by Scott & Kimberly Hahn about their conversion to Catholicism and one of the best parts of the book was that I got a better idea of the Protestant point of view towards Catholicism. Like, for example, I've always had a hard time seeing why Mary is a difficult concept. Many Protestants see our actions as worship while we see it as veneration. This difference lies in our definitions of worship: Protestants worship by singing and praying, which Catholics do to Mary. Catholics, on the other hand, see worship as the adoration of Christ in the Eucharist. The difference lies in the belief of transubstantiation, I believe. The differences in opinion and outlook--it's all just fascinating to me!
I suppose this comes from my not-so-secret life goal of re-creating a republic of letters, one where people can truly dialogue with each other, discussing issues and topics that truly mean something to them without having the discussion degenerate into a shouting match between morons. I had coffee with an old friend--a grade school friend!--Annie; well, she had coffee, I had something more fruity. She goes to Kenyon and is significantly more left-leaning than myself, but that was one of the best parts! Agreeing to disagree but still open and listening and respecting the other. It was so edifying and enjoyable and she paid me the compliment of telling me I was an "intelligent conservative." She did not mean, of course, to imply that conservatives are inherently unintelligent but rather, like many liberals she even conceded, many people do not take the time to truly know what they are talking about or know what they believe. With the blind following the blind, it is easy to see how politics in Washington get so mangled.
My darling dog, Heidi, the Rottweiler-Shepherd, is currently hanging out with me downstairs. We're listening to "Shine" by David Gray, which may be my favoritest song only because it's so beautiful. I'm also really like "Say Hey" by Michael Franti at the moment, but that's because it's reggae and too much fun to groove and shake your hips to. I'm also loving on "Concrete Schoolyard" by Jurassic 5 but that's because it's got an old-school beat with clever lyrics.
Glad to be home. Glad to be with my family. Senior year is going to rush by like that first wave you try to catch with your hand upon stepping into the ocean as a child. Doncha worry though--I'll certainly be keeping y'all updated! I am looking into having one of my research papers published (it's on Jack Kerouac and humanism). If anyone knows anything about that, let me know. I'm going to talk to one of the profs at school, but if anyone has inside knowledge, I'd surely appreciate it!
Heidi has gotten out of her sprawled position on the floor and is now whining. I shall now spend ten minutes debating whether I should actually let her out this late because the last time I did, a little deer-chasing action happened...oh fudge, we'll just leash it. ciao!