Posted in Writing Life

Life and Books

I am braving the heat in my sunny and a/c-less work corner (it’s the 3rd day of 34 degree heat) to post because it’s been so long. Last week, before the weather got hot, I went for a walk with A, one of our long walks: 20 km to the end of Queen St East and back. The next few days, we cleared out books, setting outside a number of boxes for neighbours to pick through. You can tell the kind of place we live in as everything was gone within hours.

Now I can actually find the books I have yet to read, and we have shelf space for new books. My kids are slightly creeped out by the neatness of the shelves in the living room: all the games neatly stacked, nothing flopping over or falling out or stacked in layers. You can actually read the book titles. Now for a couple of pics from the walk (click to enlarge):

This is a glimpse of Old Toronto (old meaning about 1870s):

And here is a church front in a gentrified area that used to be an Irish slum. Here’s my question: what is the meaning of the dollar sign intersected by a cross?

All right–I’m taking my netbook off to Starbucks to write, because our house has no a/c. And that is a story for another day.



Lilian is the author of Web of Angels, a novel about a mom with DID (multiple personalities). She's also the author of the historical novels, The River Midnight and The Singing Fire, about secrets, friendship and motherhood in 19th century Poland and London.

13 thoughts on “Life and Books

  1. I think it is IHS – a Christogram representing the first three letters of the Greek for Jesus: IHSOUS
    If you look it is maybe the cross turning into the I and then you can see the H and the S.

  2. Soooo hot! Unbeareable. Perhaps I should leave the books I recently culled outside my house? I think at the moment they would just get very wet (no worries about it being too hot here!). And 20k is a huge walk – I’m very impressed!

    1. It was a beautiful day, perfect weather for a walk–I was tired though after 3 hours, and by the time I got home I had a heat rash on my feat and around my ankles complete with blisters! I’ve spent the whole week since then indoors, first to heal the blisters and then to hide from the heat wave. I’m back from Starbucks now. Believe it or not after a couple of hours there I found the a/c too cold!

  3. Every time you post photos of Toronto, I want to go back there. I love that city!
    Sorry about the heat and no a/c. That’s not fun. We were visiting our son last week in Texas and their a/c went out while we were there. Ick. But I know what you mean about the temperature in restaurants being TOO cold. I have that problem too. No happy medium!

    Hope your air is working soon – or the temps cool off 🙂

  4. Hi Lilian, I asked a pastor I know in N.Ireland about the cross and here is the answer. It is actually three letters upon each other: I,H and S. The I is styalized with a cross at the top. It is what is known as a christogram, a monogram of the name Jesus, using the first three letters of the name in Greek IHSOUS. It has also been interpreted as referring to Jesus. Hominum Salvator – Jesus Saviour of Mankind.

  5. Woops, see I’m late with my response! But, I do hope your poor feet are beginning to feel better. Come viist us, weather is sunny/warm but lots of cooling breeze and solitude for writing! Hope you find a comfortable spot for writing soon.

  6. I love your photos of Toronto. And did you say 20km? That’s looong, especially in the heat. But lovely that you and A could walk like that in your city. Glad to hear that the heat broke and am super impressed with your book cull / neighbour share. Might have to follow your lead.

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