Reading tames the savage beast - or more likely I need to read if only in order not to feel deprived. Call it a placebo.
Tonight I caught a glimpse of Sen. Bradley’s wife’s memoir and it was greedily consumed. She was born and lived her formative life in Germany (close to the Czech border but at least it’s southern Germany), a country pleasingly foreign and yet not-so-foreign, impregnated as it is with ancestral resonances. It promises to be chockful of Germanic things, a plump memoir meaty with literary allusions (she’s quite the reader).
My ancestors came from "good" places to come from, if I can say that without bias. If living in the Midwest is an impediment to a strong sense of place (New England and the South have much more history and "placeness") then my ancestors are rich in what I lack. Southern Germany is the stuff of novels: the land of the Schwarzvald, castles, and Bavarian solicitude. The other side of the family came from Ireland, home of kings and saints, warriors and poets. I could read about either for quite a while.