Hurricanes, Libraries, Winnie the Pooh, and Dickens

Happy Halloween everyone! I know that I said I was going to do another post last week – and I was, honestly, but I am here now and ready to write. I decided to spend the night at a friend’s house last weekend which meant I was at her house when Hurricane Sandy hit New York. She lived uptown so we were all fine and with electricity, it just meant I couldn’t really get home in hurricane conditions. So it turned into a 3 day sleep over with me her, and another of our friends. There was a lot of baking amazing gingerbread cookies that I now have the recipe for, reading, and watching season 3 of Downton Abbey online – being inside for extended amounts of time made us cave instead of waiting until January to watch it in America. For those of you who haven’t seen it yet, we only got 3 episodes in but it’s been pretty great so far. We were lucky not to be hit too badly by the hurricane, and my thoughts and prayers go out to people in lower Manhattan, Queens, New Jersey, and anyone else who is dealing with the repercussions of Sandy.

This weekend, before the hurricane hit, my friend and I started our massive 3 day hang out/sleep over by going to the New York Public Library on 42nd street. I had been there before, but had never spent a lot of time inside. The whole building is gorgeous of course, including the Reading Room, and more museum-like than library like. (To get books you can go to the branch libraries, although there is a children’s section in the main library). We had planned earlier that week to go see the original Winnie the Pooh that they have on display in the children’s section. Because who doesn’t like Winnie the Pooh really? (Also we are 5 years old at heart). I got the idea after reading this article. So we met up near my house, walked down Lex, discovered a street fair there, and wound our way down to the library. When we got there we asked this adorable Russian lady where we could find Winnie the Pooh, and she told us that he was her favorite! I want to hang out with that lady!

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Anyway, there they are in all their glory! The otter on the left is apparently a character that was added for a later version of Winnie the Pooh, but the rest of the animals are the originals that A.A. Milne gave to his son Christopher Robin. The original book of Winnie the Pooh first came out in 1926, and (according to Wikipedia), the stuffed animal of Roo was “lost long ago”. Sad. But we had a great time going down and taking tons of pictures of the stuffed animals and the paintings on the walls around the exhibit.

After we paid homage to Pooh Bear, we decided to go see the Charles Dickens exhibit that was at the library as well. Winnie the Pooh and Charles Dickens. What a combination. That was also a lot of fun and very interesting, and made me want to reread Great Expectations, which I am working on now. When people think Charles Dickens I feel like they think of super dense and depressing writing, but he also has amazing descriptions and characters in his works. I am going to review Great Expectations once I finish it, and will probably use a lot of information from the exhibit in that post, but it did say that George Orwell said, “No English writer has written better about childhood than Dickens.” So I will be reading Great Expectations this week while we wait for the MTA to get the subways back and running (work has been cancelled due to the subways).

I also promise that I will review The Age of Miracles, which I now finished a few weeks ago. That is coming either later today or tomorrow. Happy Halloween!

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3 thoughts on “Hurricanes, Libraries, Winnie the Pooh, and Dickens

  1. Pingback: Two Books at Once | goodbookscents

  2. Pingback: Some Thoughts on Dickens | goodbookscents

  3. Pingback: A Trip to the Library: Why Children’s Books Matter | goodbookscents

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