While I have finished From Ashes to Life by Lucille Eichengreen since the last time I posted, I'm not quite ready to cook up another review yet, so you'll have to put up with my exhaustive re-telling of my weekend's adventures.
First of all was the trip to Boston. I lived there for about 6 months this year, found that the best job I could get in the span of 6 months while spending every available moment on the effort was a full-time gig at the downtown Borders store, which was great fun but certainly not very lucrative (especially with that big cut of my paycheck going toward those shiny new books and CDs I had to see every day). This being the case, I was reluctant to pick up a lease on an apartment only to find that my lot might not be improved by better career prospects.
Murphy's Law dictates that if you have one remaining job prospect on which you pin your hopes prompting you to throw (nearly) all your worldly belongings into an overpriced storage unit, move home to enjoy a glorious rent free and employment free "vacation," while you give them two weeks to make up their mind about you (which will give you approximately 2 weeks to find a new home in a city 6 hours away and start over again in a place that is 6 hours from just about anybody you know)....they will get back to you at the end of the third week. At which point you will bellow, "Ah, to heck with Boston! I kind of loved you, but I'm finished getting jerked around by you."
This endeavor left me with a storage unit full of my worldly belongings, no job, but still no rent payment which I guess is still better? So this past weekend, I spent exorbitant amounts of money on renting a huge van, fueling it and renting a hotel room at the Hampton Inn for the privilege of driving 700 miles in ridiculous traffic in an awkwardly large vehicle and doing significant amounts of heavy lifting. At the end of it, the thing that I'm probably the most happy about is that my book collection is all together in one place again.
As if this monumental task weren't enough for one weekend, my mother and I also enjoyed the privilege of babysitting my eight-year-old cousin on Monday. I continue to exist in the weird bracket of life where I am more of a playmate for him than an authority figure which makes this kind of day rather exhausting. While brainstorming what on earth we would possibly do with him from 6 a.m. until say 4 in the afternoon on Monday, the genius plan to take him horseback riding came in from left field from my grandmother who had promised him just such an outing. This outing unfortunately didn't actually occur until after the alotted babysitting time thus extending the babysitting. Nevertheless, the four of us (who could, by the way, not possibly know less about riding horses) set off for Eagle Rock where we would experience horseback riding for the first time.
As it turns out, this was somewhat enjoyable and ridiculously funny. After signing wavers, being given helmets, being taught the most basic basics of riding a horse, I, in all my abject fear of being on top of horse was chosen to get on a horse first. Little did I know, this was actually a fortunate turn of events. So I'm up on Honey the horse parked out in the corner of the barn yard (or uh, whatever) waiting for my cousin, my mom, and my grandmother to get put on their horses. My horse is kind of medium sized, my cousin's is a bit smaller. All the time, we are being reassured that the horses are "so nice, wouldn't let anything happen to us, would follow along with minimal requirements for steering from us." Then, out of the barn comes this hulking creature - Zeus. Zeus is the horse my mom would be riding. Zeus along with being very tall, very wide, and very scary is not a "nice horse," he likes to bite and kick the other horses and munch on grass along the trail instead of following along placidly like the other horses. My mom riding Zeus made riding Honey seem like nothing, so I settled right in to my ride while mom struggled along with the hulking, unruly Zeus who true to his description had to be held back to keep him from bothering the horse in front of him and took every chance he got to stop and munch the grases much to my mother's chagrin. Now I can say that I've ridden a horse. I don't know if it's something I'll ever do on a regular basis, but I have to say it was a neat experience to have. My mom begs to differ.