Hello all and welcome! In case you didn’t know, I enjoy reading a variety of blogs, especially from other authors revealing their latest creations or personal happenings. With that said, although I am never sure WHAT to write, I’ve learned to keep it brief and throw in some humor to mix it up. It tends to lighten up the content AND my day. Keep it simple, right?!
You grow up the day you have your first real laugh — at yourself.Ethel Barrymore
BUT first, let’s kick off with this vibrant photo of nature’s colorful splendor. And no matter how you’re celebrating the weekend, may peace be with you and yours throughout the holiday.
The Easter bunny has arrived once again and brought giggles to the kiddos as they search feverishly for the hidden Easter treasures. Smudged chocolatey smiles add to the sheer delight of this tradition.
The Bookshop on the Corner by Jenny Colgan
The very first line sets the tone for the initial chapters until the reader gets encaptured by the protagonist’s (Nina Redmond) inevitable change in direction and attitude. “The problem with good things that happen is that very often they disguise themselves as awful things.”
Nina Redmond is a single 29-year-old, insecure, and ultra shy librarian on the verge of losing her position now that her particular Branch is preparing to shut down for good within a few weeks. At a crossroads in both her living arrangement and career, the heavy-hearted young bookworm wills herself to make the ultimate decision to fulfill her dreams of running a bookstore on her own or succumbing to a lesser position in the new modern multi-media central library. After serious deliberation, she imagines running a bookshop in the city where readers will come from all over England to browse and purchase her selections. Pinching herself back to the reality of limited savings, she answers an ad about an oversized, dilapidated van with a frivolous dream of converting it into an ideal bookstore on wheels. There’s one huge problem — the van is in Scotland!
Albeit somewhat affordable with her minuscule funds, she’s never driven such a large vehicle EVER! So, how will she get the behemoth clunker back to Birmingham, England?! Nina keeps telling herself she’ll figure it out. Not heeding her friends’ displeasure about the half-cocked idea, she musters up the courage and heads on her journey to the countryside. After all, she can always change her mind, right? Nina feels the need to at least tickle her fancy about this possibility. Upon arrival, the fresh air of the hills and meadows envelop her senses. The naive young lass could kick herself for never venturing outside of her immediate area in England. She is awestruck by its beauty.
But before Nina gets too heady about this newfound land, there’s a bigger challenge than purchasing the monstrosity. She soon realizes she must fix it up and get permits prior to making the long trek back home. And then there’s the question of where to find a parking spot in the big city. The slight-built young woman becomes quite pleased with herself after making the purchase and starts planning out the rest of her new business endeavor. Locating a place to temporarily rent in the small village, she is determined to make this plan work.
With some tough setbacks, however, her well-intended schedule is thrust into a whirlwind of unforeseen circumstances, frustrations, and self-doubt causing her to stay put in Scotland for the time being. But Nina fears the worst — losing everything with no steady job, ending up penniless, and possibly with nowhere to go.
The Bookshop on the Corner kidnapped my interest not only with the lively cast of cagey and humorous characters but with several unpredictable roadblocks and bends between best friends, prospective beaus, lustful encounters, and Nina’s stubborn level of acceptance. Accepting her own weaknesses and strengths might just be this petite female’s ultimate challenge.
I was glad I had a weekend to pick up this book and jump headfirst into the deliciousness of Scotland. Complete with colloquialisms and seasonal village flare, Author Colgan puts the reader right beside Nina enjoying the local festivities. I gave this book Five Stars and would recommend it to my female reading friends. * (see note below)
* Note: This is not a paid-for review and there are no spoilers in its contents. This is my personal experience in reading this particular book from a simple, no-nonsense perspective and overview.
Golf is a good walk spoiled.by Mark Twain
A Slice of Golf
Golf is one of my other joys and very much an obsessive pastime… a love-hate relationship if you will! With its unforgiving traps, water hazards, bending limbs, and edge-of-the-cup putts that just won’t fall, it’s an opportunity to get away from the laptop, commiserate with nature, get a bit of exercise, and visit with friends who have a mutual kinship with this silly sport. I mean, it must appear crazy to the non-golfer watching us parade around such beautiful grounds chasing a little white ball. Determined by sheer grit, we hunt the small sphere as though it was some kind of golden treasure. But alas, don’t be fooled. Once we’ve located the dimpled specimen, we wind up a skinny stick with all our might and hit it as far away as possible. At this point, the hunt resumes. Once in a while, the so-called Golf Gods offer up “a birdie” which ensures we’ll be back to do it again real soon.
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