Tag Archives: Tolstoy

Finally Finished Reading War and Peace

Cover to the English first edition

So I finally finished War and Peace. It took 2 weeks. All I can say is thank God. Well, I actually have more to say of course.

The book ended with “it is… necessary to renounce a freedom that does not exist, and to recognize a dependence of which we are not conscious.” Well fine. But, did I need to read 1,500 pages to get to that?

I understand the book is a historical novel, an extremely looong novel. According to Wikipedia, Tolstoy’s wife had to rewrite the draft 7 times before he was satisfied with it. Wonder if she divorced him? I also wonder if he would have rewritten it 7 times if he had to do the grunt work himself.

What I think Tolstoy was trying to say is that the farther back we look in time, we see how much of our actions as individuals and groups are inevitable. And we are not as free as we think we are.

Anyone who has ever gone grocery shopping with toddlers understands how little freedom we have. As I mentioned in my Nothing to Wear post, I’m sick of my clothes, but I can’t get away with ditching them all. Have to wear something. If for no other reason than I don’t want to stick to the car seat in the 100 degree Texas heat. Getting arrested for nudity would be inconvenient and would totally stress out Mr. Husband. Furthermore, I shudder to think what they would make me wear in jail. Yuck!

When All Else Fails – Read War and Peace

Say what? Darling Grandson came home from infirmary yesterday. While he was there I found myself in a weird state of emotional and mental paralysis. Desperately needed something to take my mind of worrying and “awfulizing,” a word I learn years ago in counseling. Awfulizing means taking every fear and drawing it out to the worst possible conclusion and then worrying about THAT.

Crocheting didn’t help because there is mental room left to think. TV wasn’t much help either. So I went over my mental list of things I want to do before I leave planet earth. See the snows of Kilimanjaro? Nah, not an immediate solution. Have to pack and travel. A review of my Kindle books turned up Tolstoy’s War and Peace. That’s on my list of books to read. So I started it Monday. Turns out it’s a darn good book. Tolstoy had an amazing gift of describing what is going on behind the curtain in one’s heart of hearts. What a master. It also makes everyday problems seem petty in comparison. Been wrapped up in it for days now and I’m only 30% finished.

So Grandson is home. He’s being a little cocky and all “I can do this myself, I’m tuff enuff.” So I’m giving him a loose rein. Put him to work yesterday in the yard and painting in Mr. Husband’s office. Like everyone is advising me, he is a grown man and has to do this himself. Hooked up an old computer for him to use and he probably stayed up late on it. So I woke him up this morning at the crack of 9:30 (when I woke up) and told him that I expected him to get in the habit of sleeping at night and being awake in the daytime. Well if he can find night jobs in the roofing or construction lines of work, more power to him, but that’s unlikely.

I did let him know that when I was his age I found myself broke, with no options other than on my grandmother’s sofa. It’s an opportunity for a fresh start and a good kick in the pants because being at granny’s house can get a little boring. All the more reason for him to get on his feet and fly away 🙂

I’ve given up resisting the urge to hug and kiss him and do it every time I feel like doing it. Also tell him I love him once an hour. He’s just gonna have to deal with it. It’s the price of admission at Casa Grand Mama.

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