Tonight I am planning on attending a lecture by one of the University's Art History faculty called "Changing Clothes and Places: Pieter Bruegel's Wedding Dance". The painting is the subject of a broader talk on changes that have been made to paintings over time. It sounds fascinating (even if my descriptions sounds sort of lackluster). There is always so much going on on campus and I don't take nearly enough advantage of the free events. How lucky am I to be able to enrich my life by learning from so many knowledgeable people.
This weekend I am hoping to take a more formal tour of the current exhibit at my local art museum, American Moderns, 1910-1960: From O'Keeffe to Rockwell, which I mentioned seeing recently. And at the end of the month there is another talk at the museum that sounds interesting, "Daily Life in Greek and Roman Households".
Next week Israeli author Ari Shavit is speaking in Omaha. I would love to hear him speak, but I am afraid I won't be able to manage it. Perhaps I can content myself with listening to an interview with him on NPR this past January.
Maybe I will add his book to my growing list of Israeli fiction (and nonfiction) that I hope to get to in the coming months. I only have two classes left and there is nothing listed in the course catalog for fall that could fill its place. Not even a Jewish-American Literature class (which I believe is offered every so often). I've spent two full semesters reading Israeli authors and I hate the idea of not continuing. I'll share my list of potential reads here soon. Maybe I can keep the momentum going on my own?
Now that I have gotten into the habit of taking classes again (okay auditing is a little different than doing all the coursework), I hope to line something up in the fall. There is a history course on Israel/Palestine that sounds promising, but it is an Honor's Colloquium and likely to fill up quickly. If the professor has enough interest from others for auditing and can switch the class to a larger room, there is a chance I might be able to listen in. Otherwise I am contemplating taking a papermaking class. I will have to take it as a student since classes with labs cannot be audited. I'm quite excited at the prospect and will let you know how it turns out.
And there is lots of reading going on behind the scenes, too. I seem to have slowed down lately--not on adding books to my reading pile, but just generally in my reading and finishing books. When I finish my class there might be a little extra time to spend on other books, and I might finally join my public library's book club.
For now, though I leave you with a little something from Vita Sackville-West's All Passion Spent, which I am enjoying very much and hope to finish very soon. Lady Slane has moved into a house in Hampstead and has become great friends with the owner of the house and the man who has been doing renovations for her. Her life, all of a sudden is quite freeing. She gives me hope. Something to look forward to perhaps.
"Strange, the relief and release that this companionship brought her! Was it due to the weariness of old age, or to the long-awaited return to childhood, when all decisions and responsibilities might again be left in the hands of others, and one might be free to dream in a world of whose sunshine and benignity one was convinced? And she thought, if only I were young once more I would stand for all that was calm and contemplative . . ."
There is lots of dog-earing going on in this book. Lady Slane is a wise woman--always so understated in life, but now she is coming into her own. A lovely book to read.