Tuesday, April 30, 2019

Life Lately | April



Life //

Life has not gotten any easier (and some situations, like work, have gotten more difficult), yet when I look back on this month, it's full of joy. I spent meaningful, unhurried evenings and weekends with friends: a tour of the Capitol in Spanish then a scavenger hunt through the botanic gardens with my ELL students to practice their English, an evening of pupusas and karaoke to raise money for a local nonprofit, a day hiking in Harpers Ferry and driving through Maryland, lunches at my favorite Del Ray cafe followed by walks down Mt. Vernon Ave, two friends' new babies, two of my favorite bands (Muse and HÆLOS) live after years of waiting to see them, brunch at Northside with the girls from my old community group, the two newest Marvel movies, a backyard cookout, Easter dinner with good friends. 

D.C. -- though I love it dearly -- can feel restrictive when stuck in a routine. The area I live in isn't walkable, and my commute takes me from concrete to highway to concrete to tunnel to concrete, with few green spaces. April cracked through the grey and brought spring, longer and warmer days, and many, many blooms. I caught the cherry blossoms on peak day, wandered under the last of the magnolias, ran on wooded trails instead of my usual urban route, kept my balcony door open for days, and spent a blissful day hiking in the West Virginian mountains. Ever since moving to D.C. I've noticed the importance to my own state of mind in regularly breaking my routine, especially with detours into nature. With summer not-so-subtly creeping in, I'm looking forward to many more days away from screens indoors in pursuit of the great outdoors.

Books //

Prayer by Tim Keller
An excellent look at the purpose of prayer and meditation and how to do both, based on the history/"fathers" of religion like Martin Luther and Augustine. A good book to take notes on and think about how to implement in my own faith walk.

The Essential Tales of Chekhov by Anton Chekhov
I've never read any of Chekhov's short stories before, and this was a great introduction. Chekhov's writing includes the rich language and slower storytelling I tend to love with Russian lit, and I'm looking forward to reading more of his work.

The Bird's Nest by Shirley Jackson 
Though not as good as Jackson's more famous works, The Bird's Nest is still a solid psychological thriller about a woman with four personalities. Jackson was revolutionary in her time when she included multiple personality disorder as a plot device, and now the idea is a constant in the thriller genre.
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