Tuesday, February 25, 2020

Wind - Not MY Friend

Yesterday, this is the back side of our house on our 40 acres - we get a lot of wind, from time to time.  Dog fence will be coming down soon.  We no longer need it as our 16 y.o. (almost 17) 'wiener dog, Chaco', who doesn't venture very far, plus we are always with him when he goes out. Our big Weimeraner, Bailey, passed away last August.  And in his failing days, he didn't need a fence either.

I was planning on making a trip to Denver, yesterday. I belong to a book club group of fellow teachers in Jeffco and was looking forward to meeting and discussing our latest read "This Tender Land" by William Krueger.  I really enjoyed reading this book, set in the Depression Era times about some orphaned children who were on the run from an Indian boarding school, which was a cruel place for them to be, in Minnesota.  As I read it, I could picture 'my father as a boy', he would have been the same age as the protagonist in this story.  Those times must have been for the strong and brave. 

The 'front range' highways and byways were all dried off from Sunday's snow accumulation, as far a I could tell.  It was the wind that kept me from going.  Lots of drifts and ice in these parts (at 8200 ft.) and I don't do well driving (especially that distance) with either one...so I stayed home.   Local schools were even on a delayed start schedule due to this weather.

So, I spent the day finishing another book I was reading, the controversial and much talked about "American Dirt" by Jeanine Cummins.   I had to see what all the buzz was about and I don't quite understand the controversy.  It was a fantastic read...full of twists and turns, well written.  I couldn't put it down most of the time.  I am getting better about using long stretches of time to really dive into books..LOVE IT!   Anyway, it goes on my top 10 best reads.

What drew me to read this one is I saw a news piece about 'readers did not think this author knew what she was talking about' since she told a story about a fictional Mexican mother on the run with her son, as migrants and she supposedly is 'not of true Mexican heritage',  However, does that mean that she can't write a story about Mexican people?  Some claim that the characters in the book were 'stereoptypical'.  Maybe so, but this book shined in the 'story telling realm'.  I think many may miss the true theme of the book..a loving mother's strife for her child and her identification with her immediate family, the reality of the intensity of the presence of drug cartels in Mexico and Central America and it's effect on everyday citizens and the responsibility and consequences of reporting in journalistic writing. It truly gives soul to the migrant population.  I kept thinking, OK, when do we get to the 'hokey' part, but it never came.  Read it and tell me what you think. 

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