11 September 2007

a good day for soup.

i am drinking a complimentary coffee from dave's - where i stopped on my way to work to buy a $.75 bag of spinach to go in my lunch.

i always feel like an impostor there, like i don't belong, picking out nice cheeses or meats, acting as if i shop there all the time. i guess i do.

but i don't feel like i ought to; starving artists shouldn't shop at dave's.

it has taken me all this time to realize that i have a routine that i've been building all summer long. that little things like sleeping through my snooze and reading a lot of emails from home and never actually going running but instead going somewhere for coffee happen every day. later, when the season shifts up and i have some other job or frame of life, i will look back at these distinctive things as the substance of the time.

this has been the summer: scrambling out the door a little later than intended, coming into the office at newspaper p. and staring for a half hour, rousing myself by a jaywalk over to starbucks, getting down to work just before lunch.

i started reading girl meets god by lauren winner last night. i mistrust the title. i like to think that her publisher forced it on her or that maybe she is like me and gets paralyzed when it comes to naming something that she poured months of herself into.

my best titles are only lifted quotations, a segment of someone else's thought and i do a miserable job writing my own headlines.

i like her also because she is an intellectual and never sacrifices that, but she befriends you with her writing. she shares awkward stories about herself, but has to define a word every other chapter.

her style reminds me of kathleen norris and anne lamott: the fragmented confessional memoir. chapters end and begin with no immediate connection to each other, yet they all gather into a whole of thought by the end of the book. if i ever write a book it will probably be like that too.

i read the first two chapters last night and she made me want to travel again.

"when [hannah] lived in paris and i lived in cambridge, we used to meet in london for weekends. she brought french chocolate and we sat in pubs and teashops for hours. we darted in and out of churches and bookshops and walked through parks."

a year ago i was in berlin and we were sitting on church lawns, journaling on park benches, eating on balconies by the train tracks. we only had 10 days.

i just opened the window so i could hear the rain better and the cars coursing down main st..

raindrops are lining up along the bottom of the thick telephone wire that hangs outside my window and dripping in groups onto the people at the bus stop below.

it's almost lunchtime so i guess i can get to work now.


Anonymous said...

i am excited to read your book someday! :)

and i really like "the cloister walk". i just finished it by the end of august...and find myself going back to some of the chapters again and again.

oh how fond those memories of last year are....i think you might have an idea. ;) i love you, hannah!

Brutes In The Halls said...

Yes, forget journalism. You should write a book. A book about nothing.

AES said...

It's good to read you again, Hannah.

Hope Elizabeth said...

there's rain in DC also, creating a day for soup atmosphere here too. i, also, will be awaiting your book ... as i love anne lammot and look forward to reading lauren winner soon.

Andrew said...

iv'e missed your words - and i'm sad i missed the soup meeting. i read some ts elliot for you though - to future soups!

jamie said...

i was just thinking tonight about you...and i wanted to tell you how much you mean to me. you have helped me through so much...and have helped me grow in my faith more than i think you will ever realize. i love you so much friend...sleep well