Boxing Day in the rain – time to read some books!

Well, Christmas is over for another year. We had a pleasant Christmas – not a lot of presents (well, apart from the major present of a new computer which we bought ourselves, but we’ve had that for a few weeks now, so the novelty is wearing off), but we had a lovely day mostly just enjoying the fact that we were on our own (ORNOT moved out on Friday, so we’ve got the house to ourselves again at last – I’ve decided I’m past the stage of my life when I can live with flatmates, I like my personal space too much) and generally not making too much of a fuss about Christmas. We spent most of the day watching the extended version of Return of the King (wow!) and eating altogether too much chocolate, then made a couple of pizzas for tea (one was chicken, cranberry and brie, and the other basil brush (of course!)) and watched bad TV (the quality of Christmas TV seems to get worse every year) until we couldn’t stand it any more and spent the rest of the evening playing Unreal Tournament (MrPloppy has only just got the two computers properly networked, so we can play all sorts of multi-player games on them now – I’m totally useless at the “shoot-em-up” type games that he favours, but they’re fun anyway…)

Christmas Eve was fun too – rarsberry and her new boyfriend VivaRichie (perils of being in a relationship with a bookcrosser: you get talked into joining too. MrPloppy said he’s going to set up a support group for Bookcrossing Partners – people with bookcrossing accounts who never really wanted to be bookcrossers in the first place, but were forced into it by their overenthusiastic partners) are up in Christchurch for Christmas visiting his family, so we’d arranged for them to come round for tea on Christmas Eve, and I invited a few of the other Christchurch Bookcrossers around as well to make a party of it. Last minute organisation (when do I ever do anything else?) meant that some people had already made other plans, but lytteltonwitch was there, complete with Ms Santa outfit (with very short skirt!) and new wig, as were awhina and meerkitten. Rarsberry had brought along a few books she wants me to release in the OCZ (although one got grabbed up by lytteltonwitch before rarsberry had a chance to hand them to me, and another (Sailing To Sarantium by Guy Gavriel Kay) I’ve got my eye on, so they might not all make it to the OCZ as quickly as she’d hoped 🙂 ), as well as the journal that Rubyjules started off and that has been travelling semi-randomly around the world being added to by Bookcrossers. Lytteltonwitch also brought a book along for me – The Cat Who Ate Danish Modern by Lilian Jackson Braun (which, along with The Cat Who Could Read Backwards, which libertine101 sent to me a few days ago, means I’ve now got the first two books in the Cat Who… series – which is fantastic, because up until now, I’ve been reading them out of order). Awhina and meerkitten left a few books behind too, that meerkitten had caught at various meetups – nobody else wanted them, so I’ll probably release them into the wild sometime.

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Christmas Eve’s dessert – I broke out the old fondue set my brother gave me for Christmas a few years back and made a chocolate fondue, with lots of tasty fruit (and a few marshmallows) to dip in it. Good enough that we repeated it for dessert lastt night too!

I’ve decided to start slowly registering all of my books on Bookcrossing.com, even the ones I don’t intend to ever release. I’ve been thinking of doing it for a while, but wasn’t sure (whether or not to register books you don’t intend to release is a topic that is hotly debated on the Bookcrossing forums). I finally came up with a few reasons to justify the idea to myself: the main one is that the bigger my (virtual) bookshelf gets, the less it seems to reflect my actual reading tastes, because so many of the books on it are ones I’ve acquired purely to bookcross. Very few of my favourite books feature on my bookshelf, because if I really like a book, I’m less likely to want to release it. By registering my favourite books as “Permanent Collection”, then people will be able to look at my bookshelf and see the kind of books I really like. Also, the idea of having a catalogue of all my books kind of appeals – mostly out of curiosity (how many books have I got, exactly?), but partly from practicality – it makes it easier to remember whether I’ve actually got a copy of a particular book, or have just borrowed or bookcrossed it (plus anyone wanting to give me a book will be able to check if I’ve already got it! 😉 ). And anyway, there’s no such thing as “never” going to release a book – I hope when I die (hopefully a very very long time in the future!), all my books will be released – either to friends or into the wild. If my books are already registered, then they’ll all be ready to set off on their own adventures when the time comes. Of course, I also have to admit there’s a little part of me that just likes the fact that my stats will go up by registering so many books! Hmm, thinking about it, there’s also a little project I’ve got in mind for the New Year that will be greatly helped by having all my books registered… watch this space….

Anyway, I don’t expect (or intend) to get the job done quickly – I’ll just register the odd book now and then when I feel like it, and slowly work my way through them all. I’ve made a start, though, with two books I got for Christmas: a collection of nonsense verse that Fuzzle sent me, and Going Postal, the latest Terry Pratchett, which I got from MrPloppy (I’d been hoping that’s what he was getting me – I’ve been wanting it since it came out (actually, probably since before that 😉 ), but I couldn’t justify to myself buying it in expensive hardcover… lucky he can read my mind!) So now it’s just a matter of deciding which of our many bookshelves to start the registration process with, and then a lot of hours sitting at the computer registering the books… (aren’t I meant to be on holiday???)

Other than registering books, I intend to spend as much as possible of my few weeks’ holiday reading. The long-term weather forcast is looking pretty miserable, with even more cold and rain on the way, so I don’t think there’ll be a lot to distract me from curling up in a comfy chair with a good book…

Currently reading: The Borrowers by Mary Norton

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