Saturday, June 26, 2021

Paris in July

There's one reading event that I've been looking forward to this year: Paris in July, hosted by Tamara @ Thyme and Tea. I've been fascinated in Paris since my visit there 21 years ago (boy... was it that long??) I've taken a French course for some years before that, and since then, my love for everything French and Parisian grows each year.

You've probably known of my intention to read 300 classics in 20 years. I'm thinking about squeezing at least one book about Paris every year, just for my love for France. And reading it in July seems most appropriate, when France is celebrating le quatorze juillet (July 14th - the Bastille day)!

This year I'll be doing:

Reading: Time was Soft There: A Paris Soujourn at Shakespeare & Co. by Jeremy Mercer

Paris and bookstore; that's probably a heaven-on-earth for me! One day... probably after my retirement, I'd be happy to visit the most famous bookstore in Paris, but before that, why not reading a book about it?

Reading: The Hunchback of Notre Dame by Victor Hugo

I'm also participating in Nick's chapter-a-day Read Along (began in 24th June). During July I'll be reading quite a lot of chapters of it, but I won't be finish it before August. Well... just the biggest part of it will be superb enough, I guess!

Some TV series in Netflix, probably The Parisian Agency: Exclusive Properties and a movie called The French Toast, in Netflix, or some other French movies/series that I might find interesting. Or I should probably rewatch  Midnight in Paris, Julie and Julia, or Call My Agent!

What are your plan for next month? Are you joining Paris in July? Whatever your plan is, I hope it'll be as fun as I think mine will be!!

Tuesday, June 1, 2021

Hello June!

(picture from Pixabay)

I love June! Here in Indonesia, June and July are the freshest months of the year - cooler temperature, drier air (less humidity). It's always lovely to open the bedroom window in the morning, to let the cool breeze and the crisp morning fragrant in. I love to stand by the window and taking deep breaths while listening to birds chirping and tweeting, after months of suffocating air during the monsoons. Today is that day!! And I love 1st June most because it's a public holiday, meaning I don't have to rush to the office, and a whole day of fun things to do!

This morning my Mom and I made our favorite dessert (we both are sweet-tooth persons😁). It's Snickerdoodle Mug Cake day, baby! It's easy to make (no baking, we use microwave), fast, and very yummy!! We always serve it in four mugs, which we will eat once (one mug each) in the morning, and once in the afternoon. That will make our day! I've found the recipe from Pinterest. The best part is the layers of cinnamon-sugar in between spoonful of batter, which add a crunchiness in the moist sweet soft cake.

As usual, my June is for Jazz Age! I'm reading Fitzgerald's The Beautiful and Damned right now (actually has started it a bit earlier). It's not really my favorite, but still readable. After failed in reading Tender is the Night years ago, and now this one, I'm quite certain that Fitzgerald's best writing is short stories and/or novella - he shouldn't have written more than 250 pages novels!

The Great Gatsby is one of my favorite novels - poignant but beautiful prose with perfect composition, and with layers of depth in it. This Side of Paradise is quite another beauty. It's light, naive, and full of gaiety - it's hard to not like it. But both The Beautiful and Damned and Tender is the Night... well, I'm not really sure I could stand reading about the shallow and egotistical characters for too long - that's not fun at all! But Fitzgerald's short stories.. now that's a treasure. I don't usually love short stories, but I always love Fitzgerald's.

Nick's The Hunchback of Notre Dame for Chapter-a-Day-Read-Along will also be happening this month. It begins on the last week of June, and stretches to August (53 chapters in 53 days). I will put the timeframe here to make it easier for me to catch up, since I most probably won't follow the one chapter a day rule strictly, but will try to make 7 chapters on the weekends.

24 Jun - 27 Jun : Book I Ch. 01 - 04 ✅
28 Jun - 04 Jul : Book I Ch. 05 - Book II Ch. 06 ✅
05 Jul - 11 Jul : Book II Ch. 07 - Book IV Ch. 04 ✅
12 Jul - 18 Jul : Book IV Ch. 05 - Book VI Ch. 03 ✅
19 Jul - 25 Jul : Book VI Ch. 04 - Book VII Ch. 05
26 Jul - 01 Aug : Book VII Ch. 06 - Book VIII Ch. 04
02 Aug - 08 Aug : Book VIII Ch. 04 - Book IX Ch. 05
09 Aug - 15 Aug : Book IX Ch. 06 - Book X Ch. 06
16 Aug - 21 Aug : Book X Ch. 07 - Ch. 04

I will probably finish The Beautiful and Damned in mid June, so I am thinking of reading Agatha Christie's Cards on the Table next, before the Hunchback readalong.

That's all for today, folks! I've been writing this while letting my Snickerdoodle cooling down. And now I will be savouring it!