For my birthday this year, I decided to do something for those I love. After you hit a certain age, it stops being about receiving goodies and more about being grateful.
Since the hubby was at work and the parents are in another state, I started with the dog. The hubby will tell you I would have started with the dog anyway, but that's not true. I swear.
Anyone who tells you dogs can't understand people doesn't have a dog. I planned an extra long walk for Buster and me. First I started with his usual route and then, as it started getting warm, I stopped home to change into a tee. I said, "Give me a minute and we'll go back out." Instead of heading to the refrigerator for his post walk apple, he followed me around "talking" to me. (A low, throaty howl.) As soon as the tee was on, he did a happy dance to the door and waited for me to put his leash back on. He was more excited about the second walk than he was about the first.
It's like reading an exceptionally good novel. The normal walk is pleasant and enjoyable, but the surprise twist of a second walk is fabulous and reason for celebration.
I've been reading quite a few great mysteries lately, books that deliver that something special that makes them rise above the usual who-done-it. I've noticed a trend toward "the book within the book", and I find that I like it!
L.C. Tyler's character Ethelred Tressider (yes, I said Ethelred) is a a second rate mystery writer (or, as his agent Elsie concedes, might be third-rate aspiring to second rate), and the author treats us to samples of Ethelred's hysterical prose. Mark Schweizer's protagonist Hayden Konig wants to write like Raymond Chandler, and the included sample chapters take metaphors to a new level--a good thing if you want to laugh out loud.
I haven't yet discovered any more "books within books", so if anybody out there knows of any they can recommend, I'd love to hear from you.
Now I'm off to buy my birthday cake. Some childhood traditions should remain. Oh. And here's what the hubby got me for my birthday. Did I mention he's a swell guy?