Christmas Vacation

Books / Web/Tech

I’ve been intentionally offline here for a few weeks now. I realized earlier this fall that I hadn’t taken a real break from my daily duties in more than a year. That isn’t surprising given the number of irons in the fire I’ve been watching and the fact that this was a year of significant transition for me as I moved to a new ministry and a new part of the country. Thus I felt I was due for a real break.

What do you do when you take time off? For years – like since I was a young teenager – the answer to that question has been that I’ve curled up somewhere in a chair and just read voraciously. I remember how I used to reward myself at the end of finals or after a major project was finished by putting on some quiet music and picking the top book up off my accumulated pile and plowing through four or five of them in a week. Somehow just entering the fugue state of reading – letting myself be completely absorbed into another person’s thoughts was more refreshing than any other activity I tried.

But it’s been years since I’ve been able to do that. Some of you know that I have a mild form of arthritis. One of the inflammation sites is my shoulders and neck. Over the past ten years or so, the act of sitting still and holding a book so that I could see it and read it for more than an hour or so would mean that I would have to take a couple handfuls of anti-inflamatory meds to keep my regular level of functioning. For some reason reading on a computer screen didn’t bother me as much – I think because I didn’t have to hold anything up while I was reading.

So I am overjoyed to report that my christmas preI’m less concerned about them than I am that it makes reading a joy again for me.)

So I had a pretty great vacation. Thanks Karen for my present. I’ll try to remember to show up for meals.


The Author

Episcopal bishop, dad, astronomer, erstwhile dancer...


  1. Wow. I love it. I knew this was coming – been waiting for years, in fact! – but I love that you can get newspapers every day, too. I think this may actually save the papers, in fact.

  2. (And how great that it has helped you to read again! What a wonderful thing.)

  3. Meghan Gilmore says

    What was your reaction to the Pullman?

  4. J A Frazer Crocker, Jr. says

    My wife also has difficulty holding a book for very long, owing
    to autoimmune disease. About two years ago we discovered the “Levo
    Book Holder”, and got the ‘stand model’. For those books not yet available on Kindle (and maybe never??) like Zizioulas, Rowan Williams, and some classic ‘big’ novels (like Islandia by Tappan Wright) it works extremely well. Here is a link to one seller (I have
    no commercial, pecuniary or other interest):

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