For some reason, during some Lent seasons, I feel an urge to bake pies. I become Pie Man Bill. This year I started with sweet potato pie. I made three, since friends gave me a large bag of sweet potatoes. Now I plan to make a chess pie, a coconut pie (my favorite), and a marriage pie. I do not eat them. There is enough mixture to fill a ramekin or two of pie filling to bake for me. The pies are gifts. Lenten offerings.
Plans for spring and summertime in the back yard: I will move the woodpile to the north area of the fence. A small hill and a large apple tree divide the yard into quadrants. In one I plan to place two hanging baskets for a curtain of green. In another section I will place a birdbath. In the others I will place clay pots of herbs (rosemary, thyme, and lavender) and flowers. On the concrete area by the house, a patio of sorts, I may place a small table and two chairs. Simple, easy to maintain. Good.
Notes on Reading. Mythology. Neil Gaiman. Norse Mythology. W.W. Norton & Company, 2017.
In his introduction, Gaiman writes, “That’s the joy of myths. The fun comes in telling them yourself–something I warmly encourage you to do, you person reading this. Read the stories in this book, then make them your own, and on some dark and icy winter’s evening, or on a summer night when the sun will not set, tell your friends what happened when Thor’s hammer was stolen, or how Odin obtained the mead of poetry for the gods. . .”
It is obvious that Gaiman enjoyed telling these stories. They are full of adventures: perilous actions, challenging voyages, battles, contests. They are populated by gods, dwarves, ogres, and giants. There are stories of intrigue and deception. Gaiman relates them in high spirits and humor. Example: a giant says, “I am grim of mind and wrathful of spirit and I have no desire to be nice to anyone.” Gaiman presents a harrowing apocalypse, “Ragnarok: The Final Desity of the Gods” and stories about the creation. He focuses on the gods Odin, Thor, and Loki, and the beautiful and independent-minded goddess Freya, and their doings. We smile to see our strengths and foibles reflected in the characters of these entertaining tales from a world of wonder. Do yourself a favor. Buy the book, read it slowly, and be enchanted.