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Infinite Country by Patricia Engel | Thoughts

   Published : 2021   ||    Format : print   ||    Location : Colombia ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆   What was it about the country that kept everyone hostage to its fantasy? The previous month, on its own soil, an American man went to his job at a plant and gunned down fourteen coworkers, and last spring alone there were four different school shootings. A nation at war with itself, yet people still spoke of it as some kind of paradise.. Thoughts : Infinite Country follows two characters - young Talia, who at the beginning of this book, escapes a girl’s reform school in North Colombia so that she can make her previously booked flight to the US. Before she can do that, she needs to travel many miles to reach her father and get her ticket to the rest of her family. As we follow Talia’s treacherous journey south, we learn about how she ended up in the reform school in the first place and why half her family resides in the US. Infinite Country tells the story of her family through the other protagonist, El

Planning for Summer Reading | Weekly Snapshot

Here we are - almost at the halfway point of the year. I still remember starting the year with so many plans, and then came a vicious virus to stump everyone. I'm reaching that point where I'm beginning to miss the life that was, while also feeling very unsure about the life that will be.

Last Week

Just another week around here - many more to come, I guess. Last week, a few of the places we frequented pre-virus have reached out saying that they are reopening. While I'm glad they don't need to shutter their doors anymore, we are still opting to stay home as much as possible. There are going to be people outside who can't avoid it, so if we can afford the luxury (or curse, however you want to call it) of staying indoors, then we'll take it. One of the places that reopened is our gym. It's the one place where I can't imagine what social distancing will be like but they are running only half-class sizes for now. Since the lockdown started, the time I spend on fitness has dropped to zero. There have been days when every bone in my body has ached for no reason but that I've been sitting in the same position for hours. I know I can still prioritize fitness and carve out some time every day to workout but I need to figure out where to shove it in. Last thing I want happening is to suffer from consequences of a sedentary lifestyle.

Another place that has reopened here is our daughter's swim school. The girl had not been a fan of swimming but even she is missing her classes and would like to go back. Of all kinds of activities we've cut back on, physical activity places for kids are the ones I'll miss the most. Once these places figure out how to stay open while still ensuring social distancing, maybe we'll join. Let's see how that goes. 

Other "-ings" in life

I'm not watching anything new - still going through Property Brothers almost every evening. At this point, I'm not watching it for continuity or excitement. It's become a comforting show to spend our evenings in.

It's been beautiful outside this entire week - looks like our rains have reduced, so I've been leaving our vegetable plants outside longer. Many are still in smaller pots and I still have several summer plants going through germination. Honestly - I'm figuring out much of this as I go, including where I eventually want to plant them.  

This week, we had a very unpleasant discovery - over the past few weeks, we've been seeing what appeared to be roots growing upwards in couple of our plants that are in glass jars. It has stymied us for a while until finally this past week, we saw couple of small mushroom caps. Ugh. While they are not going to harm anything, I'm not sure I welcome them either. I know there's no easy way to remove mushroom plants once they take hold so I'm trying to accept that they are here to stay. 

Summer Reading

If there's one annual tradition I love, it's summer reading. I've tried some challenge or the other every year - failing in almost all of them, of course. But achieving the challenge goal is not the fun of it - it's the planning and the partaking in it. Over the past week, I've been debating what kind of challenge to do - keeping in mind current lifestyle, myriad interests, and limited reading time. But since I've rebooted my reading and blogging this year, I like the idea of doing something different this summer.

If you've been active in Goodreads, you're probably aware of a group that does seasonal reading challenges. I've done this once a long time ago - before kids, and enjoyed it quite a bit. So I'm planning to join their summer challenge (starts tomorrow and ends Aug 31). There's no way I'm finishing this challenge - for that I need to be able to read more books in three months than I typically read in a year. But what I love about this challenge is being able to match a random book to a prompt. Obviously I'll be choosing books from my TBR that are also short or fast. 


Last week, I picked up If I Had Your Face by Frances Cha. About four chapters in, I'm not sure where it is going or what the story is going to be. But that aside, I'm enjoying learning so much about contemporary South Korea in the book. 

I'm also reading The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck by Mark Manson, which I'm already at the halfway point and surprisingly enjoying tremendously. I'm usually a skimmer of self-improvement books - I can read a couple chapters without issue before the book starts feeling repetitive. But so far - this one has been a page-turner.

On the blog

What are your reading plans for the summer, if you have any?

Linking with The Sunday Salon at Readerbuzz and The Sunday Post at Caffeinated Reviewer.