Pam, Theresa, Denise and Jennifer
I am posting after midnight again, but I just got home from spending the better part of the day with my Jane Austen Book Club pals.
We started this afternoon with our book discussion at Denise's house. Always a gracious hostess, Denise served a lovely lunch: pasta salad, tossed salad, bread with olive oil, and assorted cheesecakes. Our assignment was Mansfield Park, but three of the four of us hadn't quite made it to the end, so we called today's meeting "Part 1" and set a date in March for Part 2. We had plenty to talk about, sharing our divergent views on Fanny Price, her cousin Edmund, Henry Crawford, Mrs. Norris and all the rest, and how we relate to certain characters and story elements based on our personal experiences. My friends are intelligent and insightful; I learn a lot from them.
Next, after a brief pit stop at home, I headed to Jennifer's house for move night. Also a delightful hostess, Jennifer supplied us with adult beverages while the fabulous Theresa put the finishing touches on dinner, a fabulous south-of-the-border feast: tamales, quesadillas, Mexican rice, a salad, and all the trimmings. Then we watched the Kate Beckinsale version of Emma and indulged in another fabulous chocolate dessert. Our evening concluded with some serious girl talk. We may not have solved all the world's problems, but I do feel that I have a better handle on my own.
It is taking us longer than we anticipated to get through all of Jane Austen's works, but it is indisputable that I have read more Jane Austen than I would have without the encouragement and support of this group. It all started with my bucket list. If you have a must-read list of books that you just can't seem to get around to, I encourage you to find a group of like minded friends and go for it. You might have to put in some extra time at the gym to work off the extra calories, but you won't regret it.