Friday Morning, August 17

1) Back porch coffee, the last of the first package of chicory coffee. I did not come to chicory coffee until later in life - certainly it was sometime in this century and not the previous one - but it's really a treat.

2) Dispiriting weather forecast this weekend, which would be fine except for my plans to be on the Cape. OTOH, I can always pack long pants, a sweatshirt, and books, but my neighbors have a campsite on Bumpkin Island in the hahbah this weekend . . .

3) Geopolitical risk analysis is not one of my go-to topics. If you were to scan my library at home you'd find shelves of English and French history, US Presidents and First Ladies, Golden Age Hollywood, homosexuals of the mid-century, Venice, courtesans, elegant disasters, art and art history, some fiction, and of course three shelves of etiquette books. But not geopolitical risk analysis. So To Dare More Boldly is a good choice for me because it's breaking new ground.

3a) Several autumns ago we were spending a weekend in Bridgton, Maine, and spent an afternoon shopping in all the Stores of Gorgeous LIttle Things. of course I bought books, and I heard two of my friends talking about that. "What did he get this time?" "About what you'd expect, some French history book. But he did get a book about ginseng." So it's good to keep people guessing.

3b) In fact, I picked up The Affair of the Poisons on that trip, which was about a few scandals during the reigh of Louis XIV, but also a book about the history and cultivation of ginseng, particularly in the UIS, and the differences between Eastern and Western medicine. Fascinating.