Saturday, January 7, 2012

Reading by Candlelight

In today's Guardian, Stuart Kelly has a piece on the illuminations of reading by candlelight:

Be sure and read the comments, some of which offer tips on getting the best light out of your candles if you are so tempted to read this way.

I don't believe I have read much by candlelight, although it does sound quite romantic. I have however written by candlelight during an ice storm-caused power outage. I was on retreat at a monastery. It was so Medieval. Limbs cracking outside my third floor window from the thick coating of ice, bells tolling the hour, the whisper of my fountain pen against the lined paper of my journal. Delicious.

I finished two books today: French Ways and Their Meanings by Edith Wharton wherein  I discovered as much about Americans as I did the French; and, Mr. Jefferson's University by Garry Wills wherein I learned how difficult it was to found a university literally from the ground up. The topography, architectural design, building materials, financing, and of course staffing of the University of Virginia were all discussed very civilly by Mr. Wills.

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