Some updates on what’s becoming a busy and exciting spring:
- For various reasons, I haven’t attended quite as many concerts as usual this season. I did manage to make it to a wonderful Handel and Haydn concert last February (Beethoven’s 4th Piano Concerto with Robert Levin; Beethoven’s Sixth Symphony). Handel and Haydn always impresses me. They are a fantastic period orchestra, and a major part of why Boston’s classical scene is so great. Next year I do plan to attend more concerts, since supporting classical musicians is one of my priorities.
- I have pretty much stopped writing short fiction in order to focus on completing my first novel. My novel is becoming quite long. I guess this shouldn’t be a surprise, since most of my favorite novels are long.
- This year I’ve already read several great books. I was deeply impressed and moved by Han Kang’s The Vegetarian and Fiona McFarlane’s The Night Guest. I also finally got around to reading Megan Abbott’s early novels. Die a Little and The Song is You were both excellent.
- I have continued taking graduate courses in environmental science. My goal is to identify specific areas in which I can contribute. I’m starting to think that waste management and land conservation might be good topics of focus for me. Waste is something I find myself thinking about/noticing a lot. It is a large but solvable problem that deserves more press. And land conservation is a subject close to my heart, as I have always loved being in nature and its fragility frightens me. Also, if you conserve land, you get the added benefits of species conservation and ecosystem services.
- One of the classes I took last semester was a fascinating course in marine biology. Much of it was wonderful and even entertaining. There are so many weird and remarkable species in the ocean, and learning about them was a joy. Parts of the class were also pretty sad, like learning that most species of albatross are endangered. I came away feeling even more strongly that preserving our planet’s wild spaces and biodiversity is THE primary challenge facing our generation.
- Meanwhile, watching videos and documentaries about wildlife has become a serious hobby. Planet Earth and Blue Planet are both excellent. There’s also tons of amazing footage on YouTube. Below are a couple of my favorite videos of sea creatures: