Monday, October 15, 2012

Angel of the Spear

This photograph was made in Rome, about a month ago. It is one of the beautiful angel statues on the Ponte Sant'Angelo (Bridge of the angels). This pedestrian bridge is a meditative walk, flanked by angel statues, each one carrying a symbol of the Passion of Christ. (His suffering and death.)

This one, The Angel of the Spear, is made by Domenico Guidi, from his teacher's (Bernini) design, towards the end of the 17th century.  It has the inscription "Vulnerasti cor meum" which means: "You have ravished my heart" (The Song of Solomon 4:9)

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Autumn Scene

I took these pictures a couple of days ago, with my mobile phone. It's in our small town's public parc, in front of the old mansion which is today a museum. The little horse statue is a favorite of most kids around here, and the parc has fun play structures, both manmade and natural!


Saturday, October 13, 2012

Reading Challenge - some changes

I joined a reading challenge this year: The Mount TBR (to be read) = Books I have sitting on my shelf and never got around to read.
My goal is to reach 25 books before the end of the year.  My problem is that I keep reading books which are NOT on this list and can't be, because they are either new acquisitions or borrowed at the library or from friends. 
So far I have read the ones in red. There are some changes to the list, and that's ok, as long as all books were in my possession before January 1st 2012. 

My Reading List:

  1. Anita Shreve: A Change in Altitude
  2. Gregory David Roberts: Shantaram
  3. Peter Hain and Desmond Tutu: Mandela
  4. Bjørnstjerne Bjørnson: En Glad Gutt
  5. Rainer Maria Rilke: Letters to a young poet
  6. F. Scott Fitzgerald: Tender is the night
  7. Nicholas Sparks: Safe Haven
  8. Anita Shreve: Fortune's Rocks
  9. Lorànt Deutsch: Metronome
  10. Fyodor Dostoyevsky: Brødrene Karamazov
  11. Dan Brown: The Lost Symbol
  12. Mark Lévy: Les Enfants de la liberté
  13. Knut Hamsun: Victoria
  14. Ketil Bjørnstad: Liv Ullmann - Livslinjer
  15. Sophie Kinsella: Mini Shopaholic
  16. Karine Reysset: Les yeux au ciel
  17. Stephenie Meyer: The Host
  18. S. Mitra Kalita: My Two Indias
  19. Marc Lévy: Mes Amis Mes Amours
  20. Solveig Tufte Johansen: Bare Natten har verdensrom
  21. Nicholas Sparks: A Walk to Remember
  22. Anita Diamant: Good Harbor
  23. Anita Shreve: The last time they met
  24. Bergliot Hobæk Haff: Den Evige Jøde
  25. Sarah Rayner: One moment one morning

Friday, October 12, 2012

Good Harbor (Book Review)

I bought this one because I had read "The Red Tent" and absoutely loved it. This novel, Anita Diamant's second, is very different. It is a contemporary story, set on  the coast of Massachusetts, USA, where we meet two women and their families.  They are different, a generation separates them, but they become good friends, during long walks and conversations on Good Harbor beach.  A story about friendship, love, marriage, religion, overcoming illness and believing in life itself. I love Diamant's language, her way of painting images in my mind. The novel was published in 2001. 

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Baby Bird kicked out of Nest

It happened yesterday. I kicked my baby bird out of the nest. Not literally, of course, but I think it's a perfect image of what I did: My writing project, a 324-page-long manuscript for a novel, was mailed off to a publisher. Standing there in the post office, I was dizzy and completely giddy, didn't know if I was going to laugh or cry, and I kept dropping my car keys, or my pen, or the extra envelope I was carrying, and in the end a box of paper clips, which scattered all over the floor, so that I had to crawl around and pick them up while people were staring, before I finally got to seal the heavy package, make sure the stamps stayed on, and push it through the opening in the wall. 

In Norway aspiring authors send their manuscripts directly to a publisher, and there will be  an answer after 3-8 weeks.  The odds of getting published are extremely slim, and I'm very well aware of the fact that I've just started the nerve wracking  journey on the roller coaster of hope and disappointment.

But I have to believe in this. Believe it may happen. A wise woman, herself an artist and writer, told me this today: "Faith is and patience and persistence..."

So I choose to cross my fingers and believe that my baby bird has the strength to fly. We'll see....

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

To Kill a Mockingbird - Book Review

“You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view... Until you climb inside of his skin and walk around in it.” 

I recently read this book: "To Kill a Mockingbird" by Harper Lee. The novel, published in 1960 stands as a classic of modern American literature, and it was one of these books I just had to read.
It is a story about growing up in the 1930's in a Southern small town.  The childhood universe of play, fears, questions and learning and the adult universe of racial prejudice, single parenthood and courage to stand up for what you believe is right. The main characters are  Jean Louise, called Scout and her elder brother Jem, their father Atticus, which is a lawyer,  and their housekeeper Calpurnia. Then there are all the different neighbors, and the little town with has its secrets and its dos and don'ts. 
An important book and a good read!

Tuesday, October 2, 2012


Visiting the Colosseum was one of the highlights of our trip. Surreal that this enormous structure has been standing there for almost 2000 years, and it was very special to walk around within those stone walls, thinking about the atrocities that happened, and about the thousands of people, emperors and ordinary people, who have been just there, watching the combats and the killings of men and amimals... We could almost hear the screams and the roar of the crowds...

Monday, October 1, 2012


My son turned 13 this summer, and last week the two of us went to Rome on a 4-day trip, which was his birthday gift from me. I once decided that I want to take each of my kids on a "discovery trip" when they enter the teenage years. Three years ago I went to Paris with my daughter, and for my son I chose the Eternal City.
We had wonderful days in Rome, walking, talking, enjoying art, meals, icecream... 
There is tremendous value in traveling alone with your child. You get to talk, listen, learn to know each other better, and you make memories.
The picture is taken at the Piazza del Risorgimento, just outside the walls of the Vatican City.