I found a fun meme on Bakerina’s blog, where she kindly invited people to play along. I took up the invitation, and here are Bakerina’s five questions to me, with my answers.
1. What is it about knitting that you find so satisfying?
There are so many things: I love the texture and the color (although these delights could be satisfied by fondling a basket of yarn) (. . . which I’ve contemplated); I like the creativity of selecting stitch patterns (color patterns, mostly; one of my favorites is called “dancing grannies”). The greatest satisfaction, however, is very much about the physical act. I find it calming and centering; it seems to disengage a judgmental, impatient part of my mind. I often knit during Quaker meetings for business, and it helps me listen.
2 What do you want to read when you finish the book you are currently reading?
“The” book I am currently reading? I’m reading “The Quakers in America”, a brand‐new, very good book (which moved right to the top when I got it); “How to Cook a Wolf” by MFK Fisher; “Master and Commander”; and “The Sacred Art of Bowing.” I usually have several titles in the mix at once. Three of these are library books on interlibrary loan, which means I read ‘em when I get ‘em. Oh, and I’m working on the “Illiad.” I guess getting back to that is what I want to read next.
3. A compound question: When you moved from the West Coast to the East, how did you travel? Did you see or do anything particularly memorable along the way?
I flew. Or rather, I rode in an airplane. I shipped my belongings via UPS, at least the ones I wanted to take. I abandoned my futon, believing correctly that it would be cheaper just to buy a new one. I heavily weeded my collection of paperback sci‐fi, fantasy, and religion/spirituality books, and spent years regretting it as I searched for hard‐to‐find old favorites when I needed comfort reading.
4. If you had an independent income and could live anywhere that you desire, where would you live?
I would live on the bluffs above the Pacific Ocean near Bonnie Doon, California (just north of Santa Cruz).
Or maybe London.
How big will my independent income be?
5. Have you ever been to Reading Terminal Market?
Mmmm. Sausage. The single most‐missed Philadelphia experience is RTM. I used to work half a block away. Can I tell you what this meant?
Lunches: We got yer Mexican, yer Chinese, yer American diner, yer Southern, yer Thai, yer Italian, yer cheese‐steaks (although, truth be told, my favorite cheesesteaks come from street trucks or Greek pizza joints); yer ice cream; yer fancy‐schmancy coffees, teas, muffins, and cookies.
Dinner: Oh, to be able to buy fresh veggies daily; meat, poultry, eggs, and dairy directly from family farmers; fresh fish cut to order; whole spices in bulk; fresh artisanal bread; perfectly aged cheeses and ten kinds of olives; trendy and mundane kitchen implements; cookbooks; gewgaws; used books.
Breakfast: There is nothing better than the heavy, dare I say greasy, traditional American breakfasts served at what my friend Barbara and I affectionately call “The Amish Counter.” Once a week for several years, that’s where you’d find us, eating spuds. And, in my case, omelettes or eggs and bacon or sausage. Good, Pennsylvania‐German style all‐pork links, an inch in diameter and cut into two‐inch sections before being broiled. (Not the sickly little bread‐filled Irish breakfast links you find here in Boston.)
Be still my heart. Have I been to Reading Terminal Market, indeed.
If you would like to join the fun, here are the rules:
1 — Leave a comment, saying you want to be interviewed.
2 — I will respond; I’ll ask you five questions.
3 — You’ll update your journal with my five questions, and your five answers.
4 — You’ll include this explanation.
5 — You’ll ask other people five questions when they want to be interviewed.