So I just didn’t get much reading done this week, as sad as that is. I spent the first two days of the week in day-long meetings, and then drove to my parents’ in Virginia. My friend and I toddled around the farm, visited the library book sale (see below for a list of what I got), and then relaxed with the parentals. On Thursday, we made pickles and blackberry jam – yumMY! Then on Friday, we headed back; I prepped for a meeting, had the meeting, and then collapsed into bed to sleep for ten hours. Yesterday, I spent most of the day doing small things around the house and watching episodes of Digging for the Truth and MI-5; I just needed true down time.

But I always read before bed, and I had to do a bit of reading for my Friday meeting – so here’s what I’ve got for you:
A great essay called “Sandbags in the Archipelago” by Heather Elliot. (You can read the whole thing here.) It’s a witty, erotic story of a travel romance that made me want to pack my bags and head to a remote island (Easter Island comes to mind since it’s the remotest in the world) where I could disconnect from my life, at least physically and practically, and have some crazy fling with a beautiful man. The piece is also great writing – eloquent and subtle. Check it out if you have a few minutes and let me know what you think.

Another surprisingly interesting review book called Inquest on Imhotep by Derek Flower. I will review the book in full when I finish it, but it’s a complicated murder mystery that is set in Egypt and centers around the secret societies that surround the world of Imhotep, the architect of the pyramid at Saqqara. It’s good so far.

What I am noticing about my reading (and my TV viewing for that matter) is that right now I’m very invested in exploring worlds that have nothing – at least on a day to day basis – with my own existence. I seem to be craving some sort of escape, but alas, I will not get one this summer. I have only a month left, less in fact, before the semester starts and so much to do. But I hope to get away into these books, at least for a bit.

That said, I am still working toward my plan of building a place of respite in North Carolina. I have begun researching timber frame companies that can work with “green” plans, and I’m even starting to get some pictures of land that is available. So the dream moves forward, and for now, that’s my escape from every day.

How do you guys escape? Do you read? Watch TV? What do you read or watch? Or if you’re fortunate (and wise) enough to travel, where do you go? What places bring your soul back into balance? Where do you get respite?

\"Respite\" by D L Ennis
“Respite” by D L Ennis – The caption under this photo in Flick reads, “A place where you can sit and listen to the gentle flow of water and dream a dream that soothes your soul!”

Books Bought
Welcome to My Country by Lauren Slater
Purple America by Rick Moody
Sabriel by Garth Nix
Jailbird by Kurt Vonnegut