Month in Review: March 2021

March was my month for Reading the Theatre. See my wrap-up post for all the details about that! Interspersed with theatrical reads were some other terrific titles, including my first Richard Rohr (why did I wait so long?) and Hidden Valley Road, my review of which is coming soon to Shiny New Books.

I’m pleased that I’ve kept up with writing notes for each book completed on Goodreads, even if it’s just a sentence or two. I’ve linked these up in the list below.

After my intense month of reading and posting in March, I’m going to take a couple of weeks off to enjoy our spring break (mostly staycation, but still very welcome). See you on the other side!

Literature

Wendy Hiller and Leslie Howard in the 1938 film Pygmalion

Language

This month I applied for a job as a lower school English teacher and classroom assistant and had to do an interview in German. I did not get the job, but I found it a good experience anyway. I managed to express myself (however incorrectly) and to get the gist of what was said to me. Next time maybe I’ll have better luck.

Life

After several weeks of cold and snow, the sun is out and the spring flowers are blooming — a beautiful sight here in the mountains. Even if we have to endure more weeks or months of lockdown, it’s still a relief to be able to get outside and shed some layers.

How has your transition into spring gone? Did you have a project for this month? — there were lots to choose from! What else has life been bringing you?

Linked at The Sunday Post at Caffeinated Book Reviewer, and the Monthly Wrap-up Round-up at Feed Your Fiction Addiction

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30 thoughts on “Month in Review: March 2021

  1. Lory, I am so pleased that Reading the Theatre went well and that you are enjoying the first signs of spring. In the last week, we have had some glorious sunshine and we’ve been able to get out to enjoy it, as restrictions have been lifted enough for us to meet up to 6 people outside for a drink, picnic or bbq. Take care, happy reading and enjoy your break, Lory! 🙂

  2. We’re having a sunny Easter weekend here in Wales despite a cold northwesterly wind and, with spells of relaxing in the garden, managed to fit in a longish walk and a visit to a daughter and her family after several weeks of having to ‘stay local’. After her hip op in January Emily’s pleased to be able to stretch her legs in correspond longer walks.

    Good luck with applying for language teaching posts, I’m sure it will get easier as you develop confidence and experience. You don’t sound dispirited so that augurs well! And I do hope you enjoy your break — see you the other side.

    1. Oh no, if I were dispirited by failure I’d have been flattened long ago. 🙂 I do need to organize myself better to find time to study and practice. I’m too apt to fritter away time on unimportant things. Even blogging can be a bit of a distraction, hence the break to hopefully help me get the right balance of everything.

      Happy spring and enjoy your walks. Stretch carefully!

  3. Enjoy your staycation!

    And if you ever want to practice your German, do let me know. (Just an offer; I love communicating in English just as well.)

    1. Thank you, I would love that! What would you think about reading a German book together and discussing it? I did that for a while with Emma of Words and Peace for French (she set up an online chat using Discord), and it was a great way to practice, but then I decided I needed to concentrate on German. I am currently reading The Räuber Hotzenplotz but I hope to move on to adult books at some point. Or maybe shorter articles or essays would be better. If you have any suggestions please let me know.

      1. Otfried Preußler!! The first author to whom I ever sent a fan letter, when I had barely learned to write. 😀 “Die kleine Hexe” (“The Little Witch”) is part of my personal literary canon … I loved that book to pieces as a kid; and when German TV showed a screen adaptation one afternoon last Christmas, I promptly fell in love with it all over again. I’ve read other books by Preußler, too, including all three “Hotzenplotz” volumes, but “Die kleine Hexe” will always have an “especially special” place in my heart.

        What kind of book would you like to read as a buddy read? I’m open for pretty much anything!

        1. Thank you for sharing that, what a wonderful list! I would encourage you to try Georgette Heyer’s so-called “romances” — I also avoided them for years, but then read one (False Colours) and became utterly hooked. They are witty and intelligent, not at all like most of the latter-day imitations that I have tried and mostly wanted to throw across the room. In her later books she starts to repeat herself, like most prolific authors … but the earlier, better ones are terrific. Try The Talisman Ring if you want to avoid the Regency tropes (she actually preferred the 18th century and wrote charmingly in that period vein, before getting stuck with her success in the Regency).

          I also love Steinbeck, Sayers, Austen, Von Arnim, Tey, Pratchett, Lindgren … clearly our literary tastes have much in common. I aspire one day to read Thomas Mann in the original but maybe I had better concede my inability at the moment and read him in German first. I have read Krabat by Ottfreid Preussler in translation and loved it, so that’s why I’m hoping to read more of his work. Once I get through Hotzenplotz, how about a buddy read/revisit of your childhood fave Die Kleine Hexe? You seems to have been devoted to it much as I was to the Oz books as a child.

          1. I’ve only read the first “Oz” book (and seen the musical version of “Wicked”), but yes, I can see that that’s a world that can easily draw you in.

            Heyer’s “non-mystery” books have been recommended to me by a number of friends; I suppose I’ll get around to them eventually! 😀 I like her acerbic wit — in some of her mysteries it can actually even get a bit much, especially when she’s creating male characters supposed to come across as unlikeable initially but who turn out the hero eventually (like in “Behold, Here’s Poison”) — and let’s not even talk about “Penhallow” — but by and large, they’re such a breath of fresh air, especially amidst all the goodie-two-shoes (female and male alike) that populate much of Golden Age mystery fiction. I mean, I love Patricia Wentworth’s Miss Silver to bits as a character, but honestly, some of the supporting characters from her novels …! (groan)

            “Die kleine Hexe” as a buddy read sounds perfect. Let me know when you’re done with “Hotzenplotz”! 🙂

          2. Btw, here are the Heyer books that are currently on my TBR: https://www.librarything.com/catalog/Themis-Athena/toread&deepsearch=georgette+heyer

            (I hope this is going to work — if it shows you *all* Heyer books in my library, scroll down to the bottom; my LT library is sorted by “read” date, so the “to-read” books, which obviously don’t have a “read” date yet, are at the bottom of the list.)

            I’m going to add “The Talisman Ring” as well; thanks for the recommendation!

            1. I’m just seeing the Heyer wishlist so I think it worked. Cotillion is one of my personal favorites but I enjoyed all of these to some degree. I envy you the chance to experience any of them for the first time.

  4. Sorry about your job interview. I know how that goes. I was kind of shocked when I got offered the job this past month because it seemed I didn’t do well in interviews. Hope you have a good week!
    Lisa Loves Literature

    1. Oh, congrats on your job offer! That’s great news. I’m nervous enough for interviews anyway even if they are not in a foreign language. 🙂

  5. So what are you planning for the next big project? I have two papers to write for graduate school in the next two weeks but then need to start planning myself!

    1. Thank you for asking! I am thinking to repeat my “Summer in other languages” project from last year. I spent all of July reading ONLY books in French – this year I want to try German. It was a great boost for me although I’m not sure anybody else will be interested. I’ll post an announcement soon to find out.

  6. Did you ever read the Chalet School books? It’s a boarding school series set in the Tyrol. As I recall, the students alternate English, French, Italian, and German. It is a fun series (although, thankfully, not one to which I was addicted, as the books were impossible to get in the US; I got three in Bermuda on a family trip).

    1. I have heard of them but never read them. Considering the location I really should! They are still a bit hard to find, I know that Girls Gone By have reprinted many, but so far I have not felt like springing for them. I will keep a lookout in my used book trawling.

  7. I’m a little jealous of the warmer months ahead for you! Down here, things are starting to get chilly (after a very mild summer) – I’m soaking up every minute of sun I can before winter sets in in earnest. Enjoy!!

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