Remember those summers as children when we spent our afternoons at the pool and the rest of the day playing outside with siblings and friends or reading for the local library's summer reading program? Well this is how I'm planning on spending this summer, sorta. It's been an interesting spring with lots of changes. Mostly for others in my life, but their change has enacted a domino effect of change in my own. And while I've learned to welcome change and it's possibilities, I've not welcomed any of these. And accepting and adapting to these changes is a slow process. But as one dear friend recently reminded me, "I know you need to cry...but you need to start getting engaged with your life." So with a summer shaping up unlike anything I had thought it would be, I'm working on that life engaging thing. I've managed (with much help from others) to cobble together three part-time jobs for July and August which will pay the rent, put Ramen on my table, and allows for very little in the way of paid entertainment. With what will still be only a 3-4 day work week, I'll have plenty of free time on my hands. And so the question of how to engagingly pass the hours has come to mind. This morning, I counted 53 unread books stacked, piled, cased around my apartment. Over half are on bookshelves, about six are stacked on my desk, another twelve or so are on a bedside table. Some have been started and set aside for something new, were are of interest to me to read and yet here they sit. Also, in the "kindle wars," my inner tech nerd has won out over my inner book nerd and I've decided that I'd really like the flexibility of such a gadget to enhance my reading. However, I can not justify the expense of one, when I have 53 unread actual books in my house. And so this summer, I will read. By the pool, in the grass, at the park. If you see me, there will be a book near by.
Some may say, that this isn't exactly engaging with my life, as reading can be an isolating experience. But I'll still be getting out for work, Second Saturday MeetUps in San Bruno, spend days exploring the city, 3rd Friday Book Club and I plan to fully engage in the reading by blogging about the books, characters, etc. Its quite likely that there will be connections between the words on the pages and my current life status. And the reading will hopefully lead to the further engagement of those connections and life in general.
And so the plan is set. 53 books in 11 weeks is roughly 4-5 books a week. That is a lot of reading. I'm not going to force the goal of completing them all. Instead my hope and plan is to let life happen organically this summer, with few plans other than to read as the time suits, write about what I'm reading and its connections to my life, and get out and have fun.