One of the best things that has happened due to lockdown is that I am able to spend more time with nature. I have been able to discover places in my local area that are filled with lush greeneries and even some body of water. Living in London usually contains the hurry and bustle of my everyday life, due to this, I have not explored the green spaces close by. Covid-19 has given me the opportunity to explore my local area and to fall in love with it.
One of my colleagues, realising where I lived, asked me if I’ve ever been to the reservoir, during our virtual team meeting. I, thinking she was insane as there was no body if water anywhere near me, told her that of course not because no such thing existed anywhere near me. After further instructions from her, I discovered the reservoir 15 minutes walk away from my house.
I also discovered a country park 22 minutes walk away from me (the opposite direction from the reservoir).
I could not believe that all this empty green space was so I close by, especially after discovering the reservoir.
I have loved every moment of walking around both the park and the reservoir. Although I desperately want the lockdown to end, I am very glad that I have somewhere beautiful to escape to in the meantime.
Girl woman other is a book that explores the different experiences of girl, women and others in the UK.
Bernardine Evaristo’s gripping tale of diversity in the experiences of womanhood made this a novel that was very difficult to put down. One could not help but feel passionately about the characters and their experiences, from rooting for the success of Carol, to being enthralled in suspense of the twist and turns of Dominique, to gasping with shock at the revelations from Winsome. This was a novel that made it impossible not to feel some kinship with multiple characters whilst also being able to see the perspectives of those I disagreed with, gaining a better understanding of the complexities of girl-hood, woman-hood and other-hood.
Evaristo superbly connects each character to another revealing a brilliant ending, leaving no sense of unfulfillment or anticlimactic sentiment for the reader.
The form of each chapter is one endless sentence with one full stop found at the end of the chapter. It allows the reader to read at their own pace as there are no stop indicators and instead the readers can pause at their own natural pauses. The form was easy to get used to as after the first two chapters, the reader can forget the lack of punctuation throughout the novel. The grouping of the chapters, although seeming random at first does in fact make perfect sense. Evaristo creates an ingenious novel, that allows the readers to enjoy the journey whilst the book reveals more of itself in each chapter.
The book covers a variety of themes, from gender identity, to imprisonment and abuse, to racism, infidelity, and identity politics. The book not only offers the perspective of the victims but demonstrates how our actions can make others fell like victims in one form or another. The stories that Evaristo creates through weaving together the different themes is both brilliant and thought provoking.
This is not only a book that appeals to your head, through its beautiful language and lexical choices, but one that appeals to your heart through the gripping experiences of the characters described in the novel. This is a book that I will recommend to all, it is a book that I have not stopped thinking about since reading it, and it is a book that I could read a thousand times over and still fall in love with it again and again. Although I do not think that this was a perfect book, I do think that it is a book worthy of 5 stars out of 5.
After 5 days of poem writing, day six found me with little inspiration or enthusiasm. So I did what any reasonable person would have done, which was google poetry prompts. Not quite liking any of them, I decided to open my collector’s edition of Sense and Sensibility and picked words that resulted in my unfinished poem.
Day 5 of my poetry challenge began with a puzzle game where I had to decipher a famous quote. The quote was “In the end, what we regret most are the chances we never took”, by Frasier Crane. This then inspired today’s poem.
The chances I didn’t take
Where do I begin my account
Of all the opportunities missed
Of instruments dropped at an early age
Of language classes not taken seriously
Of tennis lessons too lazy to pursue
Of tutor’s hour spent moaning and groaning
Of scholarships tossed to the side
Of late night parties too tired to attend
Of birthday celebrations that will come again next year