The bad news is it's now officially halfway through the month of December with only two weeks left in the year, and I've only managed to finish reading one lonely book this month. I know I shouldn't count (quality not quantity, right?), but I do, so there you are. And any books I have finished recently I've not been motivated to write about (not in any way a reflection of the books but solely of me).
The good news is that I have less than two hundred pages left to read of Anna Karenina (again, should I be counting?), and I am expecting to finish it in the next very few days. As a matter of fact I think I will actually finish several other books before the month's out, but you never know what might happen.
I usually make all sorts of plans for my holiday break from work (two more business days to go), but I'm sort of not motivated by that either. Well, I'm motivated to have a break, but just relax and read what I've already got started or perhaps pick something else up, but just on a whim. But otherwise have no expectations or lists of things to do or accomplish. Best save those plans for 2011, which I'll share here very soon.
Best to concentrate on Anna K, however. It's really amazing how a little steady reading, even if it is just a few chapters every day, adds up to one very large book. I'm still rolling about in my mind what I think of Anna and her actions. I was heartened to read a passage today thought by Anna's sister-in-law, Darya Alexandrovna.
"The carriage drove down the village street on to a bridge. Along the bridge, with cheerful, ringing talk, went a crowd of merry peasant women with plaited sheaf-binders on their shoulders. The women stopped on the bridge, gazing curiously at the carriage. The faces turned to her all seemed healthy and cheerful to Darya Alexandrovna, taunting her with the joy of life. 'Everybody lives, everybody enjoys life,' she went on thinking, going past the women and on up the hill at a trot, again rocking pleasantly on the soft springs of the old carriage, 'and I, released, as if from prison, from a world that is killing me with cares, have only now come to my senses for a moment. Everybody lives--these women, and my sister Natalie, and Varenka, and Anna, whom I am going to see--and only I don't'."
"'And they all fall upon Anna. What for? Am I any better? I at least have a husband to love. Not as I'd have wanted to love, but I do love him, and Anna did not love hers. How is she to blame, then? She wanted to live. God has put that into our souls. I might very well have done the same. Even now I don't know if I did the right thing to listen to her that terrible time when she came to Moscow. I ought to have left my husband then and started life over from the beginning. I might have loved and been loved in a real way. And is it better now? I don't respect him. He's necessary to me,' she thought about her husband, 'and so I put up with him. Is that better? I could still have been liked then, I still had some of my beauty'."
I should mention Darya's husband is an awful philanderer, while she stays at home looking after her children and losing her good looks. She's probably just as flawed as Anna, but I still like to see someone feeling some empathy for Anna in the story.
By the way, I might once again be posting on an abbreviated schedule next week, though I still have lots to wrap up here before these last couple of weeks completely disappear, so I'll definitely be back after the Christmas holiday.
Have a great weekend everyone.