Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Book Ogling

I had to return two books to the library - but happily there were two more awaiting me. Huge great things they were too, but I was delighted to see them, and the librarian delighted that I was delighted and for a while we just ogled them...

This one tucked beneath my chin for instance, The Evolution of the Insects by David Grimaldi and Michael S Engel, consists of a hefty 650 of glazed colour pages, and at a matching hefty price (rightly so because it must have been expensive to produce) is beyond my budget. So I am grateful that Cheshire Library Services were able to borrow it for me from a neighbouring county... and that I have it until 9th June to give it back - which seems like ages away.


It is gorgeous - picture after picture of fossilised insects and then, almost interleaved with this, map after map of where the continents were ...when this hapless insect became entrapped in resin and hopelessly exuded her eggs; this nest of bees became inundated with lime; that mayfly ended its short life on clay; a beetle tumbled head-over-abdomen into a bog, or a mammoth, having eaten a nourishing meal of botfly pupa somehow was overcome by cold. All these small misfortunes are here, all this life and death - and all the while these continents rumble around the globe, making their small incremental shifts from where they were then to where they are now.

I leaf through, and another, smaller time passes. Dinner remains uncooked and the editing on my desktop is untouched since lunch-time. Until at last, eventually and guiltily, I put the book away - promising it for myself as a treat later...

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7 Comments:

Blogger BarbaraS said...

Jeepers, but that looks gorgeous! I can understand your coveteousness... any chance they can send it over to us in Ireland...?

Tue Apr 14, 08:45:00 pm  
Blogger Clare Dudman said...

Heh, heh. I'm sure there's one in Dublin, Barbara! Every capital city needs this book.

Tue Apr 14, 10:37:00 pm  
Blogger Jud said...

Interlibrary loan is a marvelous thing.

As much as I enjoy finding a volume online and submitting a request, nothing quiet compares to wandering through the stacks and seeing what interesting looking volumes you can run across.

Wed Apr 15, 03:15:00 pm  
Blogger Jan said...

It's an excellent service.
And as you said, sometimes the Librarians are as excited as you when you collect your logawaited treasure!!
Hope to see you soon so don't forget I have a kettle..!

Thu Apr 16, 12:02:00 pm  
Blogger Clare Dudman said...

Yes, Jud - I agree, there's nothing like wandering through the stacks and a little serendipity. That's one problem with the British Library - closed stacks - I often long for a browse through what they've got.

Thanks Jan! Very much...

Thu Apr 16, 10:34:00 pm  
Blogger aliholli said...

Your hair looks lovely, you so suit a fringe, it`s taken years off you(however old you are) I can`t wait to help you get it all sweaty if you know what i mean....

oh and yes, it looks an amazing book!! x

Fri Apr 17, 12:24:00 am  
Blogger Clare Dudman said...

Thank you, Ali! I have to tell you that my hairdresser knows more than he ever wanted or needed to know about silkworms now.

Every night I say to myself 'Tomorrow the gym!' But then, when I get up I seem to get trapped behind my desk in lazywoman mode. I know I'll love it once I get there. I just need a big kick out of the front door.

Fri Apr 17, 11:54:00 pm  

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