Jhumpa Lahiri and Ernest Hemingway’s adoration of far away lands

I’m opening 2020 reading Ernest Hemingway’s A Moveable Feast and Jhumpa Lahiri‘s In Other Words.

This wasn’t a planned joint reading adventure, but there was a natural connection between the two – the deep adoration both authors shared for their temporary homes.

Lahiri on the sounds of Florence that captured her:

– But from the start my relationship with Italy is as auditory as it is visual. Although there aren’t many cars, the city is humming. I’m aware of a sound that I like, of conversations, phrases, words that I hear wherever I go. As if the whole city were a theater in which a slightly restless audience is chatting before the show begins. I hear the excitement of children wishing each other buon Natale – merry Christmas – on the street. I hear the tenderness with which, one morning at the hotel, the woman who cleans the room asks me: Avete dormito bene? Did you sleep well? When a man behind me on the sidewalk wants to pass, I hear the slight impatience with which he asks: Permesson? May I?

In Other Words, pg 13,15. Lahiri, Jhumpa

Hemingway on the coming Paris Spring:

With so many trees in the city, you could see the spring coming each day until a night of warm wind would bring it suddenly in one morning. Sometimes the heavy cold rains would beat it back so that it would seem that it would never come and that you were losing a season out of your life. This was the only truly sad time in Paris because it was unnatural. You expected to be sad in the fall. Part of you died each year when the leaves fell from the trees and their branches were bare against the wind and the cold, wintry light. But you knew there would always be the spring, as you knew the river would flow again after it was frozen. When the cold rains kept on and killed the spring, it was as though a young person had died for no reason.

In those days, though, the spring always came finally but it was frightening that it had nearly failed.

A Moveable Feast, pg48. Hemingway, Ernest

Blogs Still Exist. Have a Read.


Blogs are still breathing.

The ones listed below have been live for at least 5 or more years. They all post on a near daily basis.

Suggestion: add them to your RSS feed if you still have one. Or don’t.

Marginal Revolution

Author(s): Alex Tabarrok, Tyler Cowen,

Challenges my default beliefs on public policy and economics. Introduces me to disciplines I’d never seek out on my own. The posts are primarily business and economics focused, but Marginal Revolution also acts as a helpful resource for writers.

Austin Kleon

Author: Austin Kleon

Austin blogs on art and writing and parenting. Then he dashes in some posts on music and dabs on a bit of life encouragement. Then he bakes it all together into a tasty content strudel.

His blog doubles as a timeline of his book writing process. You can correlate past posts to passages in his published books. It’s like he’s writing a book for you, in real time, right before your eyes.

Snakes and Ladders

Author: Alan Jacobs

My favorite non football football blog. Alan is the Distinguished Professor of Humanities at Baylor University and the most intelligent modern writer on Christianity I know. Occasionally he’ll post about football. And when he does, his observations on the game are heartfelt and true.

Kottke

Author: Jason Kottke

A hypnotizing blog.

Jason posts a variety of cool shit. ALL THE TIME. But don’t fear, Kottke.org is organized and well tagged, making searching through it’s archives a rabbit hole of pleasure.

The quick links section is updated constantly and aren’t highlighted in blue or underlined. They look like standard, un-linked paragraphs. A subtle and appealing design touch.