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Penguin

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About Penguin

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    Hive Mind Level 2 Worker: Nurse Bee

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  1. Hello, BaW friends. I am just starting to make my 2020 reading plans, and appreciate all of the book list links. I did not even come close to finishing my 10x10 challenge, and I am conflicted about whether or not to continue with it. On the one hand, I am not one to fret over changing things up for the New Year/New Decade. But on the other hand, I am not sure that my 10x10 continues to serve me. Hmmm... Since I became an empty nester in August, I have done a lot of traveling. I guess that is what happens when you have children living all over the place. Since August, I have made seven longish road trips, flew to my Mom's house for a long weekend, and I recently spent three weeks in Europe. In November, I went to Denmark (for the first time since moving away in 2016), and I went to the Netherlands to see my son. It was a bit early for Christmas decorations, but they were starting to put them up. The first two photos were taken in Denmark, and the third one was in Rotterdam. I hope everyone has been doing well!
  2. Any suggestions for which town to stay in?
  3. @Negin and @JennW in SoCal thanks for the beautiful travel photos! I got The Beleaguered City by Mrs. Oliphant through ILL. Old, not-so-in-demand-books are always fun to request through ILL because they usually come from the venerable Enoch Pratt Library in downtown Baltimore, and you often get an actual old book. The Pratt Library was founded in 1882 and is one of the oldest public libraries in the USA. It was just that novella, not a set of stories - but I was not disappointed since I got to enjoy a deliciously old and somewhat dusty copy of The Beleaguered City. Thank you, @Violet Crown for the suggestion. While I enjoyed it enough, it was not what I expected. I did not do any research so I mistakenly assumed that it would be set in Scotland. Finding myself in France was unexpected. I also discovered that it could fit my Good Catholic/Bad Catholic category. That was a plus. But I had wanted something spookier, and it was not very spooky. So I stayed up too late last night reading Edgar Allen Poe stories. I am alternating between beloved stories and new-to-me stories. I've also been meaning to comment on Gossip at Thrush Green (#6). I liked it, but there was one eye-roll-worthy subplot. Some of the young folks were (gasp!) smoking marijuana. Of course, much of the gasping and gossiping about this tsk-tsk situation was done at a cocktail party where the upstanding residents of Thrush Green were slugging down their whiskey. The whole subplot just felt out of place in this series. @tuesdayschild you mentioned #8 upthread. How was it?
  4. Where would be a good place to stay for one night on the Jersey side of NYC? We have booked a long weekend at a hotel in Midtown Manhattan, and will be driving in from the DC area. I would like to stay somewhere more reasonably priced the night prior so that we can get up in the morning and drive into NYC early in the day. Any suggestions?
  5. @mumto2 The Goblin Emperor is one of my top 10 this year, too. And I am nearly finished with another book that will definitely make my Top 10 - the audio version of Milkman by Anna Burns. I see on GR that you also gave it 5 stars. I drove my son back to college this weekend, and had many many hours of listening time. We have another road trip this coming weekend, and I have about four hours left to go. I'll save those hours for that journey.
  6. @Violet Crown I have already resolved myself to the fact that my 10x10 project is going to take me two years! I do still like my categories enough to keep going. I might read The Beleagured City for spooky. Thanks @mumto2 for letting know that a free version is out there.
  7. Hello, All. I have been on the same two books for quite some time: De nærmeste by Lotte Kirkeby Hansen. It is a better-than-average family drama. It is taking me a long time to read because I read slowly in Danish. 1968: The Year That Rocked The World by Mark Kurlansky. It is taking me a long time to read because it is 480 pages long. Its primary focus is on the student protests that took place in the USA and Europe in 1968. I have learned a lot about what happened in both Western and Eastern European countries. And because I needed a change, I started Thrush Green #6 (Gossip From Thrush Green) last night.
  8. I am glad that your surgery is behind you now. WIshing you a speedy recovery.
  9. Invite me, please. All three of mine are young adults. I stopped opening up to my IRL friends about my kids a long time ago, and I have never been comfortable doing it on the boards. But I have written countless imaginary posts to all of you, asking for your advice 🙂
  10. I am sorry, Quill. Hugs. And I truly don’t mean to pick on a previous poster, but while 5 year survival rates are comforting, I recall researching 15, 20, and 25 year rates for young women with breast cancer and being not-quite-so-comforted. As for survival guilt, no, I do not have that. There are enough cases of bc raging its ugly return 15+ years later for me to feel survivor guilt. ETA: Sorry if I am being negative. I went to a funeral for a peer last week. He died unexpectedly from a heart attack, and it was indeed so sad and shocking.
  11. Jenny, your thread inadvertently did me a favor. I had been putting off looking into whether or not I have the textured implants that are now under recall. I now know that my implants are the smooth type, not the textured type. I had to call the plasitc surgeon's office because I could not find the card with the data. Fortunately, the surgeon's office still had easy access to my surgery report and I was able to quickly find out the answer. Learn from my mistake: If you get the implants, keep track of the card that describes them in detail. Forever. I probably have it somewhere, but I can't find it. In my defense, I have moved three times since 2006 - including moving overseas and back. And yes, I did intentionally put this off. I have been through the wringer with health scares too many times. Unless the health scare would benefit from IMMEDIATE action, I wait until it suits me mentally to deal with whatever it is. I had learned about the recall over the summer, and decided I could wait a bit when I read that the FDA was not recommending removal of the recalled implants unless there are symptoms. But your thread reminded me not to wait TOO long. Breast Cancer.org: Recall of textured implants and tissue expanders due to rare lymphoma (ALCL) concerns
  12. My son had three years of Russian. He had my course descriptions and his tutor wrote a LOR. That was perfectly fine for admissions. He did also meet with some faculty, but certainly not at every school. And then he had a Russian placement test at orientation.
  13. I hope you get to go see her, Quill. Being able to visit my overseas son makes it bearable. I just booked a ticket for November. I wish I could have stayed until the Christmas markets open, but I wanted to get back here for Thanksgiving. I will be there during the off-off-off season, but prices are better and crowds are light. That's the silver lining, I suppose. Hugs to you!
  14. I finished three books this week. Shocking! Wild Things: The Joy of Reading Children's Literature as an Adult by Bruce Handy. It was just OK. I do indeed read a lot of children's literature, so I felt a bit validated by reading this book. I disagreed with some of the author's opinions, but I expect that in a book-about-books. There was something irritating about the book that I just can't quite pinpoint. My favorite parts were the biographical sketches of authors like Margaret Wise Brown. She was a very interesting woman, and I had no idea of that! The Moviegoer by Walker Percy. It was also just OK. I like existentialism well enough, but I was just never grabbed by the characters or the story. It won the National Book Award in 1962, beating out Revolutionary Road. Now I am quite curious to read Revolutionary Road. Travels with Charley by Steinbeck (audio). This one was great to listen to while driving. It was always entertaining and occasionally brilliant. I wanted to find out more about the history behind the events Steinbeck wrote about in New Orleans (desegregation), and I stumbled upon a book that I am not going to link here. It attempts to do a James Frey-style-takedown, but after reading a bit on this other book's website, I remain perfectly OK with Steinbeck's book. But {shrug}, I always take memoirs with a big fat grain jar of salt.
  15. I don't have anything useful to add, because I rarely send anything to my overseas son. I make up a small box of inexpensive items for his birthday and Christmas, and that is usually the extent of it. I do keep it to inexpensive items, because, as xahm noted, he would end up having to pay a steep price to get the package released from customs.
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