Monday, June 23, 2008

Dreaming of vacation...and great conversation

37,478 minutes until vacation...

That's what I'm thinking about this morning as the thunderstorms roll through. I'm almost irrationally excited by the prospect of driving five hours north into the Maine mountains, where bears and moose roam, but my cell phone doesn't.

My sister and I were chatting earlier, laying out plans of what to bring. My brother-in-law is our house chef on vacation, so Steve and I try to earn our keep through creative drinks: last year we introduced the "Trish-tini"; this year will feature the "Steve-jito." Our shopping list? 1. Vodka. 2. Mint.

But the other vital packing question that must be addressed is what to READ on vacation. Can we trade suggestions? I'll list three books I've read recently and loved, and if you have any to recommend, drop them in the comments. (I'm just waiting for my next Borders Rewards coupon to come and I'll head off to the store).

Okay, here are my three:

1. The Divorce Party by Laura Dave.
I ADORED this book. I don't know how she captures the subtle nuances of love from so many stages of life, but this book is beautiful and true...and both heart-wrenching and hopeful at the same time, which is tough to pull off. It's worth a space on your bookshelf.

2. House Lust: America's Obsession with Our Homes by Daniel McGinn
Why do we suddenly crave granite countertops and stainless steel appliances, when 100 years ago, the kitchen was the part of the house everyone wanted to hide? This book is hysterical, insightful, and non-judgmental (the author fesses up to his own house lust right from the start, which I appreciate). A fun read.

3. Not the Religous Type: Confessions of a Turncoat Atheist by Dave Schmelzer
My friend Dave (who you may recall as a character in my book) wrote this, and I was lucky enough to read it early on. I'm a big fan, and not just because it's the first book I ever blurbed :) This book is the stuff great cocktail party conversations are made of...

Which brings me full-circle to Trish-tinis and Steve-jitos!

And a question (in addition to my request for book recommendations--don't forget that!): If someone threw a cocktail party in July in Cambridge (in a 900 square foot condo with limited air-conditioning and a small-ish dog) but promised compelling conversation of the sort one imagines in the "salons" of Renaissance times, would you show up?

16 comments:

LEstes65 said...

I will actually run out and get Dave's book. If he writes like he speaks, I know I'll love it!

Jane said...

I can't wait to get the kids to NH this year! I love being on the lake. I've been reading lots of short stories lately. If you can find Omnibus: Bedtime stories by Roald Dahl, I can't even say enough!!!! I'm also reading Change Your Brain, Change Your Life by Daniel Amen. Fascinating ways about the 5 areas of our brains, how each area works and how to strengthen each area.

Elizabeth said...

Pretty sure they didn't have a/c in the Renaissance, so you should be okay - especially if you promise to serve cold Trishtinis.

heidikins said...

Oooh! So jealous of your fab trip! As far as reading goes, my most recent favorite is Atlast Shrugged, and I'm currently attempting to get through Passage to India...but it's just not doing it for me. But if I was going to Maine, I would probably try and read all the Anne of Green Gables books, just because, ya know, I could. :o) Have a great time!

xox

Gretchen said...

I would SO BE THERE!

Liza said...

I would be there too. I'm about to start Rites of Spring (Break) by Diana Peterfreund. It's the 3rd in the Ivy League series and I can't wait to start it. I'll have to look for Dave's book the next time I'm at the bookstore.

L Sass said...

That sounds like the best party ever!

As for books... I am reading Jane Eyre for the first time in 10 years and LOVING it!

Larramie said...

Have you read DRIVING SIDEWAYS by Jess Riley yet? Oh, LOVE THE ONE YOU'RE WITH by Emily Giffin. Then, beginning on July 29th, you'll have too many to choose from!

keri mikulski :) said...

The Divorce Party is on my list.. I'm reading Jessica Brody's THE FIDELITY FILES and I love it. Can't put it down.

~Virginia~ said...

oddly enough, on vacation i like to re-read stuff--like harry potter. it calms me. :)

Paige Jennifer said...

Oh I would so show up (she says as she stares into her empty mailbox in search of an invite). Though, um, it'd mostly be for THAT DOG.

Alyssa Goodnight said...

Define 'limited'. Honestly I think I'd be pretty intimidated to stumble into a Renaissance-style salon. But I'd love to be a fly on the wall. Assuming you had air-conditioning. :)

We Southerners can't live w/o our A/C!

Heather Grady said...

Anything by Jane Green is great. She has a brand new book, The Beach House which I've yet to read. But her others are definite leave the world behind books.
Or anything by Cecilia Ahern. I loved If You Could See Me Now...the story of a woman who meets her nephew's imaginary friend and falls in love with him, never realizing he is imaginary.
I'm looking forward to my own vacation, to the great town of Braintree and then to Provincetown for the real vacation! If your cocktail party is at the end of July, I'd be game to come! :-)

Erica said...

re: cocktail party--I would totally be there...and I'd probably be the last one out the door. :)

Jen A. Miller said...

I would show up to said party at the end of the post. Then again, I'm throwing a birthday party in my 1200 square foot house with limited air conditioning and a very small dog in the middle of July!

Melanie said...

I threw a housewarming party in May in my 1100 sq foot townhome and had almost 60 people milling aroud with sangria and mojitos...I have a GREAT recipe if you want. :) And I wish I could be there!