The Art of Living

I just adore a bookstore view*

Amazingly for someone who has been reading since the age of three, I had never attended a reading** at a bookstore before this week. It was at the lovely bookstore in the village:

which not only boasts the view you see above, but has a resident cat, Catsby, and a staff who adore Miss Stella (unlike Catsby). They served nibbles and local wine as we joined the standing room only crowd in the back room, usually devoted to children’s books.

The lecture was given by Lloyd Kahn, an expert on tiny and alternative homes. Interestingly, he actually published his first book on this subject more than forty years ago, but it is now becoming a hot topic, partly because of people’s desire for “green” living, and – I’m guessing – partly because of the challenging economic times.

There was a slideshow with various small homes, ranging from gypsy caravans to converted school buses and collapsible homes that can be carried on a pick up truck. They ranged from the very basic to the very fancy (radiant heated floors and granite counter tops). It was fascinating to see how creative people are, and we learned that if you are going to live in a very small space, it’s important to have the windows at eye level to avoid feeling claustrophobic. Curved ceilings (though not as curved as mine) also help with this. We’ll have to keep all this in mind if/when we build over at the family property.

On our way back to the car, we noticed that several buildings in the Village were wrapped with felting:

And even quilts:

I later learned that this is called “yarnbombing” and is a form of graffiti or street art, in that it’s not a permanent art installation. This installation was done with the permission of the businesses involved, but often installations are not, and those are considered guerilla art. These particular pieces are mostly hand woven and hand dyed, as well as hand knitted or felted. Truly amazing! You just never know what you’ll find in this little corner of the world.

*Imagine Eva Gabor in “Green Acres” saying this.

**Due to my work schedule, I was unable to attend the reading by Damien Echols at the Ferry Building in San Francisco last night. He is the author of the one of the most moving and amazing books I have ever read, Life After Death, and was wrongly sentenced to death at the age of 18, spending nearly 20 years on Death Row before finally being freed.

pixelstats trackingpixel

3 comments on “The Art of Living

  1. Guy

    I enjoy many forms of art myself, I find that some people are so very creative and find unusual ways of expressing their talents and deepest thoughts, thanks for sharing some of your finds.

  2. Joy

    What an interesting area you live in – the library looks to be a good size. I also love the cat’s name!

    I have made a note of the book ‘ Life after Death ‘. What a terrible experience for that man & what a waste of the life he might have led.


  3. Suzy

    The bookstore is fabulous. I love it there.

    The book is amazing. It’s dark but light. How he managed to keep his spirits up and find beauty in life even on Death Row is truly inspirational. It is one of the most moving books I have ever read. I followed the case from the beginning and was moved to tears when he and his two wrongly convicted friends were finally released.

Leave a reply