I’ve only been reading this book since last week and I’m already 30% finished with it. I can’t tell how many pages the book has because I’m reading the Kindle Edition on my Droid. The app does though, have a nice “percentage” meter that tells me how far I’ve got to go.
I will say this – the book is good. As others have stated in their Amazon reviews, it reads like a Sherlock Holmes novel. It also kind of reminds me of those old books my mother used to buy me – the ones that let me choose my own ending. I would read a few chapters and then I’d have a choice – If I chose room A, I’d go to page 103. If I chose room B, I’d go to page 179. They were fun, but if memory serves, I never chose the correct ending. I would always get the boot half way through. And no matter how many times I’d read the book, I’d lose. Makes you wonder.
There was a lot of groundwork early on in this book. The first few chapters were dedicated to character development and setting, but now that I’m cruising through chapter 13, I’m starting to see what this author is capable of.
“When a human being has run the gamut of horror and suffering in a short space of time his mind ceases to be affected by further sensations. At any other time I should have been appalled that Mr. Trenton could even for a moment believe his daughter guilty. As it was, I merely accepted his words as one more link in the chain of evidence against her.”
There are some beautiful nuggets of writing tucked away in this mystery.
I gave my father a call last Monday night. I wanted to run the idea past him about my “interviewing people.” I wanted to get his thoughts on the whole thing – to see if he agreed it was worth the trouble.
“Dad, there’s so much out there people don’t know. It’s awful, and the real shame of it is that most of the time, it’s the children who know nothing of their parents.”
He didn’t disagree. I asked him when the time would have been right to really take interest in others.
“When? When I was younger than 22 – before I moved out? All I cared about was myself and quite honestly, up until that point, I thought every parent on earth had lost their minds. I thought they were doing it all wrong because it seemed as though they had forgotten their passion. Either that, or they never had any. I thought they were just making their way through. Paying the bills.”
And then I asked if I was supposed to care later on.
“I’ve been worried about myself trying to get ahead, not you. You were already ahead. I was the one who was lost out there.”
Then I asked him about his parents. Did he know more about them than I do about him?
Apparently, my father knows a lot about his parents. He told me where they were born. He told me where is mother went to school and that she skipped a grade because she was so smart and about the houses his father owned. He gave me the age my little sister was when his mother passed away. He remembered the last time she saw her. He went on to tell me a story about how his family used to live in a three story house and how they lived on the second floor. They never took notice of the third floor, until one day, my grandfather told him and my uncle to never open a certain door that led upstairs. Of course, they did and they found stairs. They went outside to look at the house and for the first time, and noticed an entire floor above them. So they went back inside, re-opened the door and quietly walked up the stairs to visit it. They discovered bedrooms and a bathroom. When they found this, they became excited and asked my grandfather if they could use that floor to live on as well and he agreed. He turned on the heat and opened the rooms for business.
I can’t tell you where my mother went to school, much less if she ever skipped a grade. And when it comes to my father, I only remember hearing the name, “Edison.”
He told me there was a building across the street and he and his brother had a friend who lived in one of the apartments. They got together and thought it would be a good idea to use an entire ball of twine to throw over the high tension lines and hold tight from building to building. Then, they added a can to each end and talked as if they were on the telephone.
As I was listening to him, I was wondering why I had never taken an interest in pretty much anyone but myself. I remember so many times of me trying to push my interests, my stories and what my life was like. Discussions over dinner were always about us. The kids. What about them? What about all the experiences they had and all the interesting things they had to teach? “Dad, what was it like when you were a kid?”
And then I wondered if it will ever be that way because from what I can see, people are more absorbed in themselves now than they’ve ever been. I can’t count the number of times a car has passed me on the highway for me to look over and see a teenager’s nose buried in a smartphone. Their parents are driving and the kid is texting. They aren’t looking out the window or having a conversation. What they are doing is telling the very person who they are physically closest to, “Whoever is on the other end of my cell phone is more important than you are. I choose them over you.”
So no, I don’t see it ever being that way. That’s part of the reason I want to do this – because the stories are interesting. They’re good. And one day, people will be telling other people about all the great conversations they had with their friends – electronically.
“Dad, what was it like that time you went camping with mom in the great Smokey Mountains?”
“I have no idea son. I was too busy reading an Ebook and texting a guy at work. I can tell you though, about how Jabba the Hutt had Princess Leia in chains and about the Smith contract. Who knows where your mother was.”
I’m just glad my father had the foresight and love for his parents to take an interest in them. He’s the one who profited, not them and certainly not me. I’ve failed in that respect, but it’s never too late, I suppose, to start learning.
It ends up our new cat has Roundworm. It’s easily curable with small doses of medicine and should be cleared up in a week or so. As a preventative measure, we’ve decided to put off his “introduction” with our other two cats until he’s cured. And besides picking up the medicine for Ron, we’ve acquired doses for the other two as well. Just in case.
So, much of today’s time and expense was consumed with Laura and myself running back down to Colchester Veterinary Hospital to pick up the medicine. Then, we had to go to the local CVS pharmacy for the second half. It’s getting pricey, taking care of this cat. Just in the past few days, we’ve dropped a few bills. When he gets acclimated to this whole thing, he better sleep on my face or something. He better work off all the nice things we’re doing for him. Rolling around on the floor and letting us rub his belly simply isn’t going to cut it.
But amidst all the hustle and bustle, I devised a plan to surprise Laura. I knew how much she loved visiting the various sections of the local Air Line State Park Trail system last year, and since we may be leaving the area soon, I thought we should visit two sections of it again today. The sun was blazing and at 50 degrees, I thought it would be a sin not to do something outdoors.
We’ve already either walked or biked on much of the trail, so we’ve had an opportunity to choose which sections we enjoy the most. The first is what I would refer to as the “heart of the trail.” It’s the section we had originally visited years ago and it has, by far, the most wildlife. We’ve seen all types of birds, ducks, turtles, frogs and fish while walking and riding through this section and today it didn’t disappoint. It includes dozens of acres of lakes, streams and swamps. The animals love it.
The second section of the trail we visited today is located off Grayville Road in Amston, CT. If you drive South on Reidy Hill Road and continue across Grayville Road, you’ll end up in a parking lot near a large field. It’s called Grayville Falls Town Park and it has a trail system across its backside. We walked along the field and into the trail system to once again find one of our favorite areas. It consists of a rapidly running river that flows down something that looks like it’s straight out of the old Action Park in New Jersey – almost as if you could tube down it. There’s also a small footbridge that crosses over to the rail trail. We didn’t make it that far, but we were able to take a few nice photos along with some decent video. Check it out, enjoy and let me know what you think.
Grayville Falls Town Park – Amston, Connecticut