Saturday, May 22, 2010

#18 Slaughterhouse Five

One of the very few books from the list that are available at my local library. (ie, the American Center Library, I didn't want to get a card at the Colombo Library for many reasons, mostly relating to the ease of public transport)

I liked it and found it hard to put down. And I was pleasantly surprised to discover that it is not, in fact, about the meat-packing industry. It officially goes on my list of best books too.

Happy reading!

Saturday, May 15, 2010

100 Best Novels

I've added something new to my life list today. (Clearly I had too much time on my hands after the 'great flood' of yesterday.)

I decided to read all the novels on the 100 best novels list (the one put out by the modern library). There are actually two best lists, one by the 'boards' and one by the 'readers'. Even though I've read only 18 of the 'boards' list compared to 22 from the 'readers' list I decided that I want to use the expert list as my guide. I think it has something to do with the presence of so much Ayn Rand, L. Ron Hubbard, and Stephen King on the readers list and their overall focus on sci-fi. It just turned me off.

So I'll try to keep you posted with my thoughts on the list as I read them. And luckily I'll be back in the states soon, with access to a real library, which will make this goal a lot easier to reach.

Todays book? #88 The Call of the Wild.
My thoughts? A little heavy on the Buck's-evolutionary-background nonsense, but otherwise I liked it. The movie was pretty faithful, which I was glad to see. And, unlike most of the list, this one was quite short, only 139 pages of fairly large print. Totally a classic.

Ooh! Quick note: I found another list, Radcliff's. And I have to say that I think it's a better list (of course I would think that, since I've read 35 of those books already!) I'm still sticking to my original plan, but I just thougth I should note that I would recommend Radcliff's list over the Modern Library's if you want fun books. It's got (in my opinion) a better mix of classics and enjoyable favorites (like Charlotte's Web. :)

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Ups and Downs of life in Ceylon

(yes I know it's called Sri Lanka now)

So now that it's less than two months to my departure, I'm starting to feel nostalgic about everything.

The upside of Colombo?
1)The sunset last night was amazing, the clouds looked like something out of Vanilla Sky.
2)I'm a 12 cent bus ride away from the beach, which I plan to take advantage of this weekend to scandalize the locals by getting a tan.
3)We have geckos everywhere. And monitor lizards in the canal.
4)Stuff is cheap. Thankfully, because I will need to basically replace my entire wardrobe after a year here. Apparently hand washing isn't as good for clothes as it sounds...
5)Air drying is easy. 10 minutes on our roof and a whole load of laundry (ie, a bucketful) is dry.

The downside?
Colombo is always reminding us about what's important in life. Like refridgerators (broke on Sunday, all the food had to be tossed) or water (shut off last night, will be turned on...?) electricity (off today and managed to somehow blow the modem along with it). *sigh*
Getting harassed on the street.
The heat.
A very long way from home, and family, and dog of course.