Friday, 22 January 2016

carnations in winter

The difference the sun makes! When this day started it was just one of those dull, grey ones; a typical winter day. I won't say depressing because I had carnations in the living room and I brought coffee in here and some of the books I'm reading. (Do you also read many at once?) Later I was listening to lectures online when something wonderful happened: The sun came out and everything changed. By the way, in Iceland they are celebrating bóndadagur, or what we would call Husband’s Day in English.

Back to the lectures. I like taking free courses online; I think it enriches the spirit and broadens one's horizons. Currently, through Coursera, I'm registered in a class taught at Wesleyan University, called The Modern and the Postmodern (Part 2). The teacher was so enthusiastic about the material in part 1 that I had to continue. He is a teacher that has one's undivided attention, and today he certainly managed it with a series of lectures called 'Intensity and the Ordinary: Art, Loss, Forgiveness'. In that one he uses Virginia Woolf's novel, To the Lighthouse, to show "how giving up the search for the 'really real' can liberate one to attend to the everyday." Those who have read it will know what he's referring to. The book is one of my favourites by Woolf and I happened to reread it last summer. I had told you that I was reading her diaries. Because of the move to Scotland there wasn't much time for reading but now I'm finishing Volume 2, which covers the period 1920-24. I haven't ordered Volume 3, yet, but it's on my book list for February.

Did you know that pink carnations have the greatest significance of them all? It's believed that 'they first appeared on earth from the Virgin Mary's tears – making them the symbol of a mother's undying love' (source). It wasn't the reason I bought them but after I looked up their meaning I find myself looking at them differently. Have a wonderful weekend!



  1. Hi Lisa, do you know this recording?


    1. thank you, Miriam! It's very strange to hear her voice; it sounds very different in my head!

    2. I know! I was so surprised to hear how it sounds. But I think, that it is so nice to know how the voice really was. In my opinion, it brings one even closer to the writer.

    3. In the bonus material on The Hours DVD there is an interview with Nicole Kidman, Meryl Streep and Julianne Moore, among others. Nicole says in it that if she would have imitated Virginia's voice it would have been comical, and now I totally get what she means.


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