Friday, April 18, 2014
FAIRFIELD-SUISUN, CALIFORNIA
99 CENTS

Some books just make you take a good look at yourself

By
From page B1 | November 01, 2013 | Leave Comment

When I opened the book and started to read, I already knew it was going to be different from what I usually read.

I don’t usually go for books that force me to deal with a lot of introspection. I’m an avoider when it comes to that. Too messy, too painful.

So when I began my journey along with “The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry,” a book set in England by a British author, I didn’t expect the type of book that was going to force me to look back on the past 30 years of my life.

What I thought I was getting myself into was Harold’s journey. He’d made some mistakes in his life and when he got a note from an old friend/co-worker, saying she was dying of cancer, he set off to the post to mail her a simple note in return. He ended up walking – walking to Berwick to see his old friend Queenie. He felt that by walking the hundreds of miles, he was keeping her alive. He left behind a shrew of a wife, Maureen, and a nosey neighbor, Rex.

Harold was a simple guy – didn’t need or want much, took all the brunts and shoves life had to offer with no complaint and no push back. Not exactly my type of person. I was having difficulty feeling sorry for any of them. Feeling rather superior and disdainful, I kept reading. Mesmerized, actually, by the words of author Rachel Joyce. I. Could. Not. Stop.

Unfortunately, the book took me to the deep recess of some memories I didn’t ever want to tap into. That’s what Joyce did to this reader – I’m fairly certain I’m not alone.

The journey became less about Harold and Maureen, and more about me. I can’t say I had a lot in common with the lifestyle the couple and their son lead, but the author was so masterful in her writing that my own past mistakes came rushing to the surface as Harold’s several-hundred-mile journey continued. Every time Harold and Maureen discovered something about themselves, I discovered some past misdeed about myself; things I should not have done or said, and the thought process began as I figured out how to make things right.

I’m not sure I’ll ever do anything about those things I regret, but it forced me to think in a positive light about the negative. Less dwelling and a more proactive thought process.

I finished the book and just sort of sat there, memorizing the ending and how, more truthfully, it made me feel about myself in general.

A little introspection isn’t a bad thing. I’m glad I got my dose of it.

So this is a head’s up – this is my book of 2013. This is a book I’m actually going to buy someone in particular and mail to them anonymously. (I think I’m safe with this column and my anonymity.) This person needs a butt kick, just like I did.

I will recommend this book to everyone, but fair warning, don’t read it unless you’re prepared to delve into a deep place of introspection along with Maureen and Harold.

In the end, Harold wasn’t such a doormat and Maureen wasn’t such a negative wench. Life and how they dealt with adversity played a key role in the unhappy, unaware people they had become. They lost their way in life.

They just needed that all-important kick in the butt to find it again.

If you read the book, pay it forward. Send it to someone who you think could benefit from that kick.

 Reach Susan Winlow at 427-6955 or swinlow@dailyrepublic.net. Follow her on Twitter at www.twitter.com/swinlowdr.

LEAVE A COMMENT

Discussion | No comments

The Daily Republic does not necessarily condone the comments here, nor does it review every post. Read our full policy

.

Solano News

‘Same Time, Next Year’ opens in Benicia

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: B1

 
Man to stand trial in rural Vacaville killing

By Jess Sullivan | From Page: A1, 11 Comments | Gallery

‘We Got Next’ Comedy Tour stops at Dimitri’s

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: B1

 
Puppies to take part in Vallejo dog show

By Adrienne Harris | From Page: A1 | Gallery

 
Afisivalu announces run for Fairfield council

By Ryan McCarthy | From Page: A3, 1 Comment | Gallery

 
Tonnesen seeks Fairfield City Council seat

By Ryan McCarthy | From Page: A3 | Gallery

Family matriarch celebrates 100th birthday

By Ian Thompson | From Page: A3, 1 Comment | Gallery

 
Barbecue brings big crowd, progress to Parkway Gardens

By Ryan McCarthy | From Page: A3, 16 Comments | Gallery

Assist-A-Grad wraps up interviews

By Barry Eberling | From Page: A4 | Gallery

 
Napa County bridge to close for work

By Barry Eberling | From Page: A4

 
Town hall on crime set in Fairfield

By Ryan McCarthy | From Page: A4, 8 Comments

 
Crash shuts I-80 offramp to Highway 12

By Barry Eberling | From Page: A5, 4 Comments | Gallery

Suisun City police log: April 16, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A12

 
Fairfield police log: April 16, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A12

Weather for April 18, 2014

By Daily Republic staff | From Page: B12

 
.

US / World

Who gained, and what, at Ukraine talks

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1

 
Ukrainian unity on display with peaceful rallies

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1

Deal reached on calming Ukraine tensions – for now

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1

 
Putin’s choice of words shed light on Ukraine

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1

Salmon released in California river restoration

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4

 
Jury convicts husband in Iraqi woman’s death

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

1 dead, 1 injured in California boating accident

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
BART fined $210,000 for worker deaths

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5, 1 Comment

Military shell prompted evacuation of hundreds

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
Astronomers spot most Earth-like planet yet

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

California health care sign-ups exceed projections

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6

 
Obama: 8 million signed up for health care

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6, 3 Comments

Dirty creek, old purse solve four-decade mystery

By The Associated Press | From Page: A7

 
Man said to be homesick for prison gets 3 1/2 years

By The Associated Press | From Page: A8

Chelsea Clinton expecting first child this fall

By The Associated Press | From Page: A8

 
Holder: Hate crimes ‘an affront to who we are’

By The Associated Press | From Page: A8, 4 Comments

Nigeria: Fate of 115 abducted girls unknown

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

 
Spate of Mideast virus infections raises concerns

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

Samples collected from oil slick not from plane

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10, 1 Comment

 
S. Sudan: 12 die after mob attacks UN base

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

Peru volcano prompts evacuation of 4,000

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

 
Tiny power plants hold promise for nuclear energy

By The Associated Press | From Page: A13

Confused, chaotic scene described on sinking ferry

By The Associated Press | From Page: A13

 
.

Opinion

Food brings back fond memories

By Bud Stevenson | From Page: A11, 1 Comment

 
Internationally out of touch

By Letter to the Editor | From Page: A11, 4 Comments

 
Watch out for grandson scam

By Letter to the Editor | From Page: A11, 15 Comments

Why so much spent to find a plane?

By Letter to the Editor | From Page: A11, 2 Comments

 
Editorial Cartoon for April 18, 2014

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A11

.

Living

Community Calendar: April 18, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A2

 
Today in History for April 18, 2014

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

My husband tells our sons that they don’t need to listen to me

By Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar | From Page: B13

 
Horoscopes for April 18, 2014

By Holiday Mathis | From Page: B13

.

Entertainment

 
Week in preview April 18-24, 2014

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: B1

Review: ‘Heaven Is for Real’ heartfelt but dull

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Lost radio program featuring Hank Williams found

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

 
‘Real Housewives’ TV star faces battery charge

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

Ill, hospitalized Miley Cyrus postpones more shows

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

 
Garcia Marquez, Nobel laureate, dies at 87

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

Entertainment calendar April 18, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: B4

 
TVGrid

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

.

Sports

Dodgers get to Bumgarner early for win over Giants

By The Associated Press | From Page: B7 | Gallery

 
Badminton update: Rodriguez, Armijo head toward post season

By Brian Arnold | From Page: B7 | Gallery

MEL boys roll to easy win over SCAC

By Paul Farmer | From Page: B7 | Gallery

 
Short-handed SCAC girls ‘gut out’ all-star win over MEL

By Paul Farmer | From Page: B7 | Gallery

Sharks beat Kings 6-3 in Game 1

By The Associated Press | From Page: B7 | Gallery

 
Miguel Angel Jimenez set for Champions Tour debut

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8 | Gallery

Sponsorship woes put Swan Racing future in doubt

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8

 
Ex-quarterback McNabb spends day in Arizona jail

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8

 
Season wrapup: Sacramento Kings’ ‘new era’ off to slow start

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8 | Gallery

Clippers-Warriors series billed as must-see TV

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8

 
Kuchar builds on Masters momentum, shares Heritage lead

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8 | Gallery

War of words in Northwestern-athletes’ union fight

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8

 
Shumenov gets big chance in ring against ageless Hopkins

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8

Montreal team sign Chad Johnson to 2-year contract

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8

 
Seattle 1B Choi banned 50 games for positive test

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8

Dodgers’ Puig focuses on baseball despite issues

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8

 
Stanford takes lead at LPGA LOTTE tournament

By The Associated Press | From Page: B9

Boston Marathon makes room for more runners

By The Associated Press | From Page: B9

 
Vanden clinches at least share of SCAC boys tennis title

By Daily Republic staff | From Page: B10

 
.

Business

Toyota Camry gets a top-to-bottom makeover

By The Associated Press | From Page: C1

 
Hot models at this year’s New York Auto Show

By The Associated Press | From Page: C2

Judge won’t order recalled GM cars to be parked

By The Associated Press | From Page: B6

 
Cyber cops: Target hackers may take years to find

By The Associated Press | From Page: B6

Walmart jumps into the money transfer biz, loudly

By The Associated Press | From Page: B6

 
.

Obituaries

.

Comics

Blondie

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B12

 
For Better or Worse

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B12

Baby Blues

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B12

 
Dilbert

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B12

Peanuts

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B12

 
Zits

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B12

Frank and Ernest

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B12

 
Get Fuzzy

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B12

Garfield

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B12

 
Sally Forth

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B12

Baldo

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B12

 
Beetle Bailey

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B12

B.C.

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B12

 
Rose is Rose

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B12

Pickles

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B12

 
Wizard of Id

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B12

Crossword

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B13

 
Cryptoquote

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B13

Sudoku

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B13

 
Bridge

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B13

Word Sleuth

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B13