I’ve always been the kind of person who loves holidays. It’s a great excuse to craft things, bake delicious pumpkin and gingerbread desserts, spend time with your loved ones, and simply enjoy the spirited atmosphere that surrounds them. Christmas has always been my favorite, but Halloween is a close second. Because of the storm we didn’t have a traditional Halloween this year but I still ate my candy and watched James Gunn flicks. One of the most exciting things to happen this week (you know, besides that whole hurricane thing), is that Starbucks brought back their holiday cups! That means that Christmas is right around the corner! I had my first gingerbread latte of the season this past Thursday and it was the perfect way to console myself for being at work while the rest of my friends and family were at home.
Since Hurricane Sandy has struck, there has been little to no transportation available around New York, plus most establishments were out of power, and some still are. Never in all of my years have I seen the school district close down for six consecutive days and counting. I am so thankful that everyone in my family and all of my friends made it through the storm okay with only minor damage and power loss in some instances. One thing Hurricane Sandy has forced me to do is spend a lot of time inside my house. Work was closed for two days last week (we were nowhere near as lucky as the schools!), and I used that time to finish reading Ready Player One by Ernest Cline, reorganize my book and graphic novels shelves, reorganize and minimize my DVD collection, straighten up some of the cluttered areas in my room (all while watching The X-Files), and spend a lot of time watching classic movies with the rest of my family. It feels like I’ve been on the go since last March so it was really nice to enjoy a relaxing week at home for a change. Sometimes I forget how much I enjoy curling up in my bed with a good book and a hot cup of tea, or lounging on my downstairs couch for family movie nights. It’s always lovely to reconnect at home and spend some time selfishly indulging in the things that make you happy. But now that it has been a few days, I’m ready to run out to Manhattan for more adventures. I have plenty of exciting things coming up this holiday season, which I’ll be sure to share with everyone :o)
(I almost never wear my glasses, and I definitely never post photos in them, but since so much of my time was spent at home it just seemed easier than putting in contacts everyday.) Anyway, before I left for Florida I took a Twitter poll to see what I should read. I began reading Ready Player One by Ernest Cline on my flight there thanks to the overwhelmingly positive recommendations of some of my Twitter followers! After the first page of the story, I was absolutely hooked. Cline mixes my love of the 80’s with my love of classic video games to create a compelling story about an international video game challenge where players were competing to inherit the fortune and control over OASIS in real life after the creator passed away and left a video explaining the prize and a clue to begin the contest as a part of his will. It took years before the first key was found (there are three keys and three gates that must be cleared in order to win the game) but once Parzival got the ball rolling, it was only a matter of days before other gunters (players who devoted their lives to the hunt for Halliday’s hidden easter eggs), began to crack the vague clue. I think I enjoyed this book so much because it felt like I was piecing together a puzzle. I spent just as much time reading as I did contemplating the possible places keys could be found or how to clear any of the gates. Cline wrote Ready Player One in a way that made it difficult for me to ever put it down. If you haven’t read it yet, I suggest ordering a copy on Amazon so you can begin the hunt as well. If you do read it, or have read it already, please tweet me with your thoughts or contact me on tumblr as I would love to discuss it! My brother is currently reading my copy and it’s so difficult for me to keep my mouth shut about what’s going to happen while he finishes.
The next activity I mentioned was cleaning, but since that is extremely uninteresting I’ll move along to the classic movie marathon my family has been having. I’ve always been a fan of old movies. I find the glamour and classiness of old Hollywood to be irresistible. The first night of the storm we watched Hitchcock’s Vertigo staring Jimmy Stewart and Kim Novak. Stewart’s character Scottie is hired by his friend to tail his wife around town because he believes she has been possessed by a spirit. As I’m sure you’d imagine, chaos ensues as Scottie gets closer and closer to his subject, and his affliction with vertigo plays a major role in the outcome of his assignment. The next movie we watched was also done by Alfred Hitchcock, and is one of my personal favorites, Rear Window. Jimmy Stewart also stars in Rear Window, but this time he is an adventurous photographer confined to his apartment after he breaks his leg. He spends his time staring out his windows at his neighbors and gaining insight into their lives. It’s all fun and games until he believes that he may have witnessed a crime. With his the help of his companion, the lovely Grace Kelly, the duo collect evidence against their suspect and involve one of the local detectives. The movie is quite exciting and the ending really moves you to the edge of your seat as you watch the story unfold. The rest of my family hadn’t previously seen Rear Window so I was really happy that I was able to introduce them to it and share in their viewing experience. We’re also planning on watching another one of my favorites, Casablanca, several Audrey Hepburn films, and a few more Hitchcock masterpieces in the coming weeks.