Time On My Hands

20 January 2007 at 10:57 2 comments

So what am I going to do with myself and all the copious free time on my hands between now and a week from Monday when the new semester starts?

  • Let’s start with the boring necessities, shall we. I need to clean my room. It’s never completely organized, but it’s gotten worse over the past month since I’ve been working on end-of-term assignments. Stacks of paper everywhere. CD cases fallen down behind the bookshelf. A thick layer of crap on the top of my dresser: ponytail holders and pill bottles and receipts from my pockets. The air conditioner sitting on the floor where it’s been for the last month. (Finally, in December, it was actually cold enough in El Niñoed, globally warmed New England to justify pulling the A/C out of the window.)
  • Fiddling. After months of feeling like my playing was deteriorating, I finally got it together to take my fiddle to a luthier. When I got it back, it was like having a whole new instrument – and for only a fraction of the price. What’s more, I actually feel like I’m a better fiddler. (There’s a lesson in this: something along the lines of “don’t be to eager to blame yourself.”)
  • I’ve been so excited about playing my newly repaired fiddle that I signed up to go to the annual Ski Dance Weekend in Vermont. This weekend is officially about dance and fiddle classes, but I tend to just go to hang out with my fiddling friends and maybe go on an outing to some local (usually food-related) attraction or other.
  • I’m going to read books for fun. I would be exaggerating if I said that I’ve forgotten what this feels like. I actually found time to read two novels during the week of bronchitis and three term papers. But it will be nice to read books without the knowledge that there’s some assignment I should probably be working on instead. Here are some of the things on my to-read list (some already in progress):
    • Kalla det fan vad du vill by Marjaneh Bakhtiari – I’ve actually started this already. It’s a great Swedish novel about a family of Iranian immigrants in Malmö. Kind of like the Swedish White Teeth.
    • The Atoms of Language by Mark Baker – When I first bought this book three or four years ago, I gave up on it as over-my-head linguistically. (I think I was intimidated by the syntax trees.) After a semester of linguistics, I’ve been finding it much easier going. (Heck, now I can even draw my own syntax trees.)
    • This is Your Brain on Music by Daniel Levitan – There aren’t so many books that let me indulge my love for science and my love for music, but this is one of them.
    • Spoken Here: Travels Among Threatened Languages by Mark Abley — Okay, this is admittedly not reading, but rereading. I read this book (in hardback) when I lived in Sweden, and then at the end of the year gave my copy to one of my classmates, an aspiring linguist. I’ve never regretted giving her my copy, but I’ve regretted not being able to reread it at will — especially while I was taking linguistics this past semester. So, as a present for finishing up my coursework, I bought myself a new copy.
    • The Deception of the Emerald Ring by Lauren Willig — This is the third in Willig’s romantic comedy adventures set in Napoleonic Europe. The series centers around a group of English spies (the Purple Gentian, the Pink Carnation) modeled on the Scarlet Pimpernel, and the first two books were a whole lot of fun. And how can you not love an author who, when she started the PhD history program at Harvard, told her professors that she was studying history so she could write romance novels.
    • There are many other books on the pile by my bed, so I’ll just stop with the ones I’ve listed. I’ll be lucky if I manage to finish the ones above by the time classes start up again.
  • Last but by no means least, I’m going to watch the Firefly box set for what must be the sixth or seventh time. I finally bought my own copy — yet another end-of-semester present — which I actually had to leave sealed in its packaging until all my papers were turned in lest I watch the adventures of Mal and the gang instead of doing my schoolwork.

There’s probably more I could add, but I think I just leave it at that.


Entry filed under: Books, Life, School.

School’s out! Those A-Mazing Cephalopods

2 Comments Add your own

  • 1. buddybob  |  4 February 2007 at 0:37

    Yeah for Firefly. Best show ever!

  • 2. Out Like a Lion « omnivorous  |  2 March 2007 at 20:46

    […] Ten days between terms was just not enough time. And, of course, I had my typical overly ambitious list of things I wanted to do during my all-too-brief break. I only managed to do three of the things on […]


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