I'm a Helicopter

According to the description in the above article, I am definitely a "helicopter parent" - that is, I hover over my kids. Heaven knows, I've been trying not to, but it's just the way I am. And as a result, this past week has really been tough for me, as C has been preparing to leave for Savannah.

Oh, sure, it helped a lot that he spent all of July in New York City. That was a dry run for all of us, C included. But one of the things that those of us at home learned was that he doesn't often feel much of a need to communicate with us often, so we know what to expect once he's down south. Sigh.

So - not much time this week for mandalas, what with gathering things for C's dorm room, helping Z get her school year started, and N still on her last week of summer vacation. I did find the time for one the other day, gel pen on vellum, which I titled "Morning Energy" because that's what it gave me as I worked it:
I don't expect to have much time until next weekend to make more, but after that things should settle down to a dull roar, I hope.

I have, however, finished three books recently. The first and most notable is Erik Larson's Thunderstruck.
What did Marconi's invention of the radio and Crippen's brutal crime have to do with each other? Actually there is a significant historical link. With remarkable, painstaking research, Larson weaves the many strands of these two stories, until, slowly but surely, they form one whole picture of a period about which I had previously known very little.

This is an amazing work. In places it is a bit heavy-going, but I found my time well spent, as Larson has a reason for every minute detail he includes. The race to perfect wireless communication makes for a fascinating read; and after the few hints about him, I am anxious to read a biography of Tesla.

I think you need to have some interest in the history of science & technology to fully appreciate the book, but if you do, you will find it great entertainment indeed.
This is the second in the Mobile Library series, and it's every bit as wonderful as The Case of the Missing Books, the first of Ian Sansom's marvelous books about Israel Armstrong. Poor Israel - he arrives in Tumdrum, Ireland, and first he discovers that all of the books in his library have gone AWOL and that his first job is to find them all. Now in this second book, he is accused of robbing and kidnapping the head of the local department store, and in order to clear his name, he sets out to find Mr. Dixon himself.

All I can say is that these books are brilliantly funny, and that anyone who doesn't fall a little bit in love with Israel Armstrong must be an old grouch.
I had mixed feelings about Ron Hansen's Mariette in Ecstasy. I expected to love it, and instead I found the style choppy and annoying after a while. I understand the reason he wrote it that way - it is divided according to days and periods of convent time, as it is set in a convent in 1906. But after about 40 pages, the style grated on my nerves.

The book does, however, contain one of the most beautiful descriptions of a mystical experience that I have ever come across. It is almost impossible to describe something like that in words - the mystical is, by nature, ineffable. And Hansen's ability to write as a 17-year-old postulant is quite admirable. But.

I've just started Paolo Coelho's The Devil and Miss Prym. I teach at 8 tomorrow morning, after getting N ready for her first day of first grade. I think I will retire with the Coelho now.


No comments: