My new book “Midlife Solo” is now available.

Beth Kaplan logo

in praise of books and fires and moving right along

Taught a make up class to finish the U of T term today – last week’s class cancelled for obvious reasons. Once again, it gives me enormous pleasure to witness writers gain courage and craft, to hear their words flow, their ideas and truths. Once again I’m grateful to have work I love that pays at least some of the bills and is useful. At least, I think it’s useful, to help free a torrent of feelings, memories, and thoughts, and turn them into story. 

Sitting in my office this Tuesday afternoon reminded me where I was that time last week, lying frightened and in pain in a hospital bed, hooked up to a drip and waiting for an operation. And yet one day later I walked out of there and went home. It really is an amazing story – one I’ll tackle soon when I get a bit of energy back. Happily I finished the course of antibiotics today. They were enormous horse pills – I had to smash them with a hammer and eat the bits with a spoon, and they wreaked havoc with my innards. Perhaps now things will settle down.

My son was supposed to come over tomorrow to have dinner and watch the segments I’ve taped of Stanley Tucci in Italy. But a friend of his who visited him recently got in touch to say his roommate was showing symptoms. Here’s the chain – the roommate, Sam’s friend, Sam, and then me. So Sam is waiting for his friend’s test results to come back, his own life in limbo. It’s still out there, lurking, terrifying. Son of a bitch. 

It’s cold. A friend wrote that I must have low blood pressure because I’m always cold – I do have low bp, is that why? Sitting now in front of my fire, such a boon companion. Even better – two books I had on hold came in to the library today, both by friends: Kerry Clare’s “Waiting for a star to fall” and Julia Zarankin’s “Field notes of an unintentional birder.” 

So now, an occasional TV show or blog post aside, I have my next days and evenings booked in a most pleasant way – sitting by the fire with two fine books, while waiting for my poor old body to fix itself. 



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

About Beth

I began keeping a journal at the age of nine. Nearly fifty years later, I started this online journal, sharing reflections, reviews, updates, and the occasional secret.

Some Blogs I Follow

Chris Walks
This blog evolves. It once was about travels. Now it’s a reason to be at the keyboard that I value.


Theresa Kishkan
Theresa Kishkan is a writer living on the Sechelt Peninsula on the west coast of Canada.


I walk on. With my feet, and in my mind as well.


Carrie Snyder
Wherever you’ve come from, wherever you’re going, consider this space a place for reflection and pause.


Juliet in Paris, Spain and Beyond
Juliet is a Canadian who’s lived for decades in Paris and writes about her travels and the many things that interest her.