Because the sun also rises, and for Hemingway

The sun also rises by Ernest Hemingway is not one of his books that he is renowned for. Released in 1926, it received mixed reviews, although since then, it has often been hailed as Hemingway’s most meaningful work. Now, I have tried (and failed) to read this book thrice. However, I have an excuse for it now. ‘I was too young, I say!’

I think one has to have a decent amount of maturity to appreciate literature which is totally and absolutely about what life in reality is, without any drama. How most things in life are so utterly mundane that you stop thinking something great will happen. The sun also rises, for the first few pages, did not seem to have the subtle profundity of A Farewell to Arms or the drama heightened by the thought of the earth moving in For Whom the Bell Tolls.

Now, you’d ask me, why are we discussing this book? There comes a time, or rather multiple points in life when you start being all existential and ponder about your purpose in life and what you have done for yourself until this moment (This is suspiciously sounding like a mid life crisis, although I hope it is far from it). However all it takes, are small unrelated events that start things rolling. Something as simple as discussing Midnight in Paris and Ernest Hemingway with a stranger or a friend liking an old blog post and a trip to Goa. That is what it took to realize how neglected this space has been. The soul needs nourishment and what better way but to feed it with books, music and art!

Lately, that had gone a little missing, largely due to some misplaced priorities in life. So what does this mean? This means that I go back to reading and feeding my starved under nourished soul. This also means that I read what interests me, no more book reviews but random thoughts about what I read and what I saw and what I understood.

And this is what I choose to start with – The Sun Also Rises by Ernest Hemingway, the book that I could never finish because the last thing that I want in life is regret, regret for not having read the ‘most meaningful book’ written by one of my favorite writers.

Adios, till I finish reading it, or till I find something interesting to say!

Ernest Hemingway’s Key West Home (PICTURES)

As per an article by Huffington Post, it’s been sixty years since Ernest Hemingway won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction (Old Man and the Sea). I was reading this and other stuff on Hemingway on the internet and tweeting at the same time when one of my friends tells me he has been to Ernest Hemingway’s Key West home. Now, I have always been a Hemingway fan since the time my Uncle gifted me a set of books by Hemingway which included ‘Farewell to Arms’, ‘For whom the bell tolls’, his short stories and ‘The Sun also rises’. His novel ‘For whom the bell tolls’ moved me, especially the character of  Pilar.

Visiting his home is a dream for me. I have imagined doing so since I finished reading ‘The Hemingway Adventure’ by Michael Palin and so when Priyank told me he’d been there, I had to get him to share the pictures! And of course, since I care so much about you all, I had to share them here on this blog. 😛

Here are the pictures !

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This page seems to have more information on Ernest Hemingway’s home in Key West. Also, please thank my friend, Priyank for sharing the pictures! 🙂

A Room Without Books

“A room without books is like a body without a soul.”

-Marcus Tullius Cicero

Yeah, yeah, I know, that’s probably one of the most worn-out quote ever used.

But I never quite thought realized the truthfulness of this statement till 2005 happened. That was when I left home for college. Before that, the book shelves in my room would be full of books, mostly bought by my Uncle. ‘Books’, which was always the answer I gave whenever he asked what gifts I wanted from abroad (read USA). The first books that I read were from the Nancy Drew series. Gradually, I moved on to others. Mostly, I relied on my school library for books were a luxury then. But there was a time when I would read wherever I went. In the school bus. Sitting on the swing. During lunch breaks when the boys in my class would play football with the fan regulator and the girls would sit and gossip (That’s stereotypical, yes, but that’s what happened). I used to read while walking from the bus stop to my house. My mother was always worried I wouldn’t meet with an accident. Books were a big part of my life in school.

And then college happened. I realised how pitiful a room looks without books in 2005 when I first entered the small room, where I was supposed to live as a paying guest for the next four years while I pursued my graduation degree. It was small, yes, and I was supposed to share it with another person. I wasn’t prepared for that, what with my six big bags containing all the stuff that I gathered over the years. There wasn’t much space for my clothes and the girly-accessories that I had. Where would I keep all my favourite books that I had brought with me?

Slowly, I realised that there wasn’t any room for my books. I was already doing this:

Source: Facebook page

I had to make place for my dull engineering books (which I rarely opened). And so, in the next college break, I returned all my favourite books to their privileged places in the shelves in my room at home. The room where I lived looked so dead now. The colours were missing. It’s even more pathetic when other books titles like ‘Fluid Mechanics’ and ‘Strength of Materials’ stare hauntingly at you and you wish you had your copy of Ernest Hemingway’s ‘For Whom The Bell Tolls’ right beside you.  A Harry Potter book would also be more than enough. To overcome my sorrow, I started to scribble book quotes with a pencil on the walls. My attempts were met with stern warnings from the owner to kick me out.

Boy, how glad I was when I started working and there was enough room for my books in the apartment which my company had provided. I was living in a small town where there wasn’t a good library but what the heck, I was earning enough to keep on buying a lot of books every month. So grew the number of books in my room.

After almost two years, I decided to go back to college to get a management degree. And I resolved, I would make room for my books however small the room may be.

Yes, Cicero was so right. Rooms just don’t feel good without books. You would agree too, wouldn’t you?