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MARCH 2020 EDITION

 

"Change is the only reliable thing in the world."
 Philippe quoting Heraclitus to Diana, Shadow of Night
 

ICYMI, from Twitter...

Q: How would Matthew be handling this virus, especially now that he has a family? 

A: Matthew knows that diseases—especially those we don’t understand—can cause panic and fear. He would be washing hands, making sure everybody got fresh air and exercIse, and reading. He would be urging kindness and compassion not blame. And have I mentioned lots of reading?  x Deb
Look out for those who are vulnerable during this time of crisis. Self isolate when advised to do so--so that you don't spread the virus to others. Keep in touch with loved ones via Skype and FaceTime. Don't forget the old fashioned phone. Or create the historical heirloom of the future by writing a letter about how you are doing--we historians will need that one day! Spread love and kindness. Don't be selfish. Buy what you need. Seniors are vulnerable and many of them are scared. Phone your neighbors and see if one of them needs a porch or front door delivery of essential items. Support independent small businesses that are facing loss of income and uncertain futures by investing in them now. Purchase gift certificates online to use when they reopen.

Be like Blue and Peanut. Look out for one another. And don't forget that the only way we will survive this is TOGETHER.  #WeAreAllSouls

 (photo by   @cartermilicphoto of @suzienewmanstables at @flintridgeridingclub)
What unites us is more important than what divides us.
"I  can’t change what’s happening to our countries and our lives.... What I can do is offer the benefit of my experience as to how to make being stuck inside your house a more positive experience. Not a perfect one, by any means, and a lot will be dependent on your resources and situation, but these techniques have helped me, over and over through long years, and I hope they might be able to help you too."  (From Inside - a guide)

If you are wondering how you will cope with new advice on self-isolation please click HERE to read this inspiring guide with tested solutions. Thanks to Liz Fenwick for the tip and to author Josie George at @porridgebrain.
Today I mailed out 12 historical documents to my students in USC History 201. We have a class that is all about experiential learning and I didn't want to lose that aspect of the class. Normally we work in USC Libraries Special Collections, where we have all kinds of treasures to explore. So eBay to the rescue, as I've been buying collections of letters and other documents for several years to use in my teaching. Some of them are winging their way to my students--wherever they might be!--who will spend the next five weeks doing what they were always going to do: transcribe, research, contextualize, and analyze these unstudied primary sources. 

#onlinelearning brings challenges but also opportunities.
Wishing everybody a day of peace and deep breaths.
Bloom.
My March Facebook Live is up now.  I answered questions about my writing process that my assistant Cat collected from the last FBLive, and I talked about my spring energy. To watch, click on the image or find it here.  (Note that this was recorded March 4, before public health recommendations that we physically distance ourselves, so there are references to standing in lines, etc.) 
Set a reminder! 
My next Facebook live is scheduled: 
 Looking for something to read?
I've been sharing #WordsOfComfort on my Instagram page. My first reading was an entry from this marvelous book, A NOTABLE WOMAN, the journals of Jean Lucey Pratt edited by Simon Garfield. It's #WordsofComfort to hear how a woman survived war and kept her spirits up. Jean Lucey Pratt's diaries were kept as part of the British government's Mass Observation Project, and editor Simon Garfield helps us see into this fascinating moment in history and how it shaped the lives of ordinary women and men.
For more words of comfort and book recommendations, keep an eye out for IG videos on my Instagram page (click here).  Over the past few weeks, I've also shared a passage from the pen of Dorothy Dunnett, who wrote one of my all-time favorite historical fiction series, the Lymond Chronicles. I read a poem from Amanda Lovelace's book, THE MERMAID'S VOICE RETURNS IN THIS ONE. (Her newest volume of poetry, BREAK YOUR GLASS SLIPPERS, is out now). And most recently, I read from the very funny book, GOOD OMENS, by Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett. 
PS.  I'm also adding these books to my recommendations over on Goodreads and BookBub, so you can find them (and me) there, if you're on either of those sites. 

Saturday morning self care. Journaling. Playing Delta Rae's new album, THE LIGHT. Doing some Tarot reflections with Kim Krans' The Wild Unknown deck. The Six of Cups encourages you to “Enjoy simple pleasure and wonder in all areas of your life.” Grateful for all the music and books that bless me. My family, healthy today. The amazing B.V.N. who is with us during these challenging times. A roof over our heads. Spring. My team. My friends who FaceTime me every day. Those near and far who have reached out and checked in. My global conventicle of readers who are tuning in for #wordsofcomfort

#WeAreAllSouls and we will get through this. Even in the darkness there is light. 
If you're looking for music to sustain you during these turbulent times, you may find something among Deb's song lists she's shared on Spotify (click here).  There are more than a dozen lists, including one for each of her novels, also lists of songs that remind her of some of the characters, and other, more random lists, including the one I've been listening to today:  https://open.spotify.com/playlist/2mMsZ1KREdBtOnmusW1mM3   (Jill)
Mood. 
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Copyright © 2020 Deborah Harkness, All rights reserved.


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