2021/11/01

A Moveable Feast - Ernest Hemingway

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Book Cover of A Moveable Feast
A moveable Feast

I did read The Old Man and the Sea in Chinese version when I was in secondary school, i.e.: long long time ago, this was the very first time that I met this author, not much idea about him and not quite remember the details of the story either.

Second reading was in about 5 years ago, For Whom the Bell Tolls; I was deeply engaged into the following poem 
(old English version) before started : 

“No man is an Iland, intire of it selfe; every man is a peece of the Continent, a part of the maine; if a Clod bee washed away by the Sea, Europe is the lesse, as well as if a Promontorie were, as well as if a Mannor of thy friends or of thine owne were; any mans death diminishes me, because I am involved in Mankinde; And therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls; It tolls for thee."    (By John Donne) 

Then, I began to read Chapter 1, when I reached the end of the story, this poem once again resonated in my head...this year, I’ve decided I must read  A Moveable Feast as my third reading of Hemingway, because:

“If you are lucky enough to have lived in Paris as a young man, then wherever you go for the rest of your life, it stays with you, for Paris is a moveable feast.” (excerpt)

I was originally thought this book will bring me to a lot of fascinated scenery or day to day life in Old Paris; but what I’ve found, like most of other readers, this book is more related to the life of Hemingway & his wife Hadley during those days in Paris; pieces of stories with his weird but interesting friends, or those lovely one like Sylvia Beach who gave a helping hands to numerous writers/ artists/ poets when they were no body once upon a time…

What the author actually let me discover is the world of a writer, why he must quit the journalist career to be a full time writer, what he’s actually thought when he was writing in the café, how & why he reacted to his weird friends…A new picture for me to know about Ernest Hemingway – a delicate person. 

It seems a bit strange for me to use this word on him if you know his background and hobby, but truly, this is what I feel, both his personality as well as writing technique.

Like many others, I like to read fictions, they lead us to infinitive imaginations, anything can be happened and experienced. But recently, I started to enjoy reading non-fictions, by knowing more about the author, more resonance can be made while reading the story they’ve written.

As usual, I wish you may have a chance to read this book, too. There are a lot more phrases inside which are worth to read, here is the one which tells me why he said Paris is a Movable Feast that I couldn't agree more.

 “…but this is how Paris was in the early days when we were very poor and very happy.”



P.S.- cover design of ebook may be different from what I've got in physical paper back

2021/10/29

3+1 "好友?"

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約伯與四個朋友
















還記得大半年前, 無論是自己還是其他教會, 差不多同步地查考聖經內的一卷書"約伯記". 即使我沒有爬 YouTube 的習慣, 但手機內每週也會收到朋友傳發給我, 由不同牧者用約伯記講道的訊息. 甚至連 IG 也有朋友以此為題材分享, 何為困苦? 尤其是發生在約伯身上, 似乎沒法子解釋的苦難, 應該如何解讀及面對?

在短短差不多一年的時間內, 我參加了自己教會, 由牧師特別安排的連續幾個短期查經班, 約伯記是其中一課. 今次, 牧師帶我們探索的主角, 並非約伯, 而是他身邊那些"好朋友"; 在理解神的創造秩序之餘, 更再次提醒著我們在現實生活中, 應該如何陪伴正在面對困局/受苦的人.

陪伴、聆聽、同理心、不代替神説話、從困苦中尋找上主的恩言…一步一步的全是可行又合理不過. 至少, 學習不要用自己的"大道理"去第二次傷害受苦中的人~ 就是在不知不覺中, 用我們有限的智慧去強行解釋現况. 

曾幾何時當我們對着一個剛喪親的人説:"不要多想, 慢慢會忘記悲痛…"
又或者對着一個長期患病的人説:"不要停止治療, 總會有痊癒的一天…"
又或者對一個身處政局動盪的國家, 連下一秒也不知死活的人説:"我為你禱告,願你平安..."
又或者對着一個因車禍而要截肢的人説:"不用喪掉生命, 已經很幸運, 快來感恩…"
還有無數無數你我也聽過甚至經歷過的例子, 難道這一切都是錯嗎? 
都不是該給予的安慰說話嗎?

事實上很多安慰的説話也確是出於好意, 只是我們不得不承認, 世上有不少苦難, 並非三言兩語便可"打發", 甚至乎仍要待在漫長的黑夜中… 直至該完結的時間來到. 而在這段時間裏, 與其勉強回應, 還是靜靜聆聽來得更好.

盡管有時, 我們以為自己曾經有相同經歷, 於是便對受苦者提供千萬個可以"即時解困"的方法… 説真的, 不盡相同; 反而當我們可以謙卑地明白自己的無助和有限時, 神自有其工作; 此刻,可不靜靜的陪伴、聆聽和等待…也許這才是好朋友應該做的事, 互勉之!








2021/10/22

Shore Wonderland

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Shore Wonderland watercolor of Palette October by Oiseau Distrait




















Palette October is the title of this book, so what should I draw for the center page? A full palette of what I have seen in this season? or, hmm...how about a more precise definition to the title: a journey towards for a better future?!

Scenery above the water of Seine was marvelous and how about underneath, would it be something like this? an entrance to a secret place for the "broken hearts" to build their perfect world? Nobody knows, as I've said, we always have a choice to pursue of happiness, even though we know we need to take the risks that might come along...still worth a try, or at least to dream of!

Drawing has it's magic code that photography cannot achieve, even in writing; Infinite Space of what you can imagine, you can express visually, there is no boundary except sometimes, I shall confess my drawing technique is the only limitation. That's why I am using all of these three elements to create my book, which have their individual "magic code", hopefully you like them all. 

2021/10/21

Autumn Breeze Sale - Jardins Secret

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Autumn Breeze Sale of Oiseau Distrait ebook Jardins Secret



Hi, Hi!

There is always a lot to learn besides writing, but why not?! writer can't write 24/7, we need some rest and space to clear our mind, otherwise it got stuck, for sure :P

A newsletter or at least a Sale/New release notice is what I always wanted, so I spend some time recently to design one for my Final Autumn Sale before entering Winter. This is only a static notice, ha ha! because a lot more technical issue has to be prepared, so, hopefully you don't mind to go to the Oiseau Distrait Page with the bookshops link if you would like to get a discount copy.

Promise, a real subscription page for my books' newsletter will be completed before I forget :D 
Btw, it's time to return my writing desk. Happy reading !
 



2021/10/16

Color of the Pebble"s"

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Walking on the street in the Autumn of Paris, especially for the first time, I was truly impressed by the richness of color wherever I go.  

I’ve remembered some of my friends said, reasons for they didn't like Paris...yes, didn’t...were because of the old & deteriorated surroundings in some arrondissement; pebble roads that were difficult to walk on, some alleys are "dirty", people are "not friendly" with a sense of "pride", not safe after dark, pick pockets around, Paris is small...., etc, etc. (don‘t shout to me if you are an instant Paris lover, like myself :D)

Even though it‘s part of the truth except with reasons behind: history, cultural, multi-racial, interaction, mindset...they are the elements to form this city, bit by bit for us to explore.

By walking almost 90% within these 12 days, my feet did overloaded. I can take bus or train, of course but walking on pebble pave, to me, is enjoyable (without my luggage :P), one of my favorite activity here; they are extra beautiful after the touch of shower - Nostalgia romance I would say. 

Pebble alley after rain with low rise apartment around in Paris









Strolling around the “deteriorating” alleys with ancient buildings, stories behind, the color of memories...whether it’s sad or cheerful, it’s a mark, always. A mark of people who live or died, who gave or took, stay or left...and that’s how I wrote Palette October.


2021/10/09

Coffee break today

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Coffee Break Blog screen shot

Hong Kong is still hoisted in typhoon Signal 8 right now, a whole day long which is not a good time to stay outdoor, so I spend my time to polish my blog. 
 
I always want to install back the widget links of those blogs I loved to follow before, so I try to find them one by one through my previous Coffee Break blog links, a total 17 of them but only two are still valid. 
 
Most of them did start blogging early before in 2009 (also my first year of blogging), and most of them were using Blogger template in those years, they are simple and beautiful, like the one I had chosen. So, it was pretty easy to start writing blog in a good mood, I treasure those memorable days.
 
I am not sure whether I did tell you before, in the very beginning, Blogger didn't offer a custom domain like of what we are having cocoadesign.net, meaning, the only choice was something like coffeebreakbyprotowork.blogspot.com; I was a newbie and misspell "blogspot" to another word (better not say :P), so when I tried to introduce my blog in an e-platform, it was directed to a shopping site, resulting in not only embarrassment but  a really bad feeling to the group. The problem was, I couldn't find out where went wrong until Mr. Wasaweb (a top contributor of the official Google+ help community) pointed out my silly mistake, which was then solved.
 
I shall never forget that night when I was stuck into the mess, and luckily got the help of someone I hadn't met before but save my blog, this is one of the reason that I keep writing today.
 
It's been awhile I was disconnected to wasaweb's blog due to his transformation of the blog structure; but I am so happy that the re-connection is resume today, so I've decided reinstall my link list in this blog, even though I have to restart all over again, it's still worth to rebuild because one of my habit while writing for a new post, a "coffee break" beforehand, to read my favorite blogs. 
 
Feel free to click for a look,  you may like them, too. 
Happy Blogging :D

"Multi-color" link in October

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multi-color tree leaves  in pink, green, yellow & purple in Paris
I had no idea I will write my ebook when I was in Paris, so the photos I took did not had specific intention besides the “beauty” that attracted me.

Usually we may have an idea of rotten dull or deteriorated shade that reflects in Autumn. When I‘ve returned home to review my photos, a much wider range of colorway were discovered, some are bright & refreshing which reminded my feeling when I was there... plein air (open air/ outdoor in French) and words flow into my head: nature beauty, God‘s creation, freedom, belief, hope, bonding, life cycle, decade & transform....


Roadside trees with Autumn leaves & low rise apartment in Paris
Due to geographic & culture difference, huge blossom tree/ greenery together with low rise buildings are easily found everywhere in Paris, plein air in another word. Hong Kong is quite the opposite, but what is the major core issue that is bounding us, the citizen who live in the city?!

Sometimes, I wonder for those frequent travelers or guru, as we say; after their millions & millions of travelling around the world, will they still prefer to live & stay in their homeland of where they were born at the very end? Even though it may be imperfect, cos’ there is always an invisible link, I guess...

Turning to another country to look for a better or more stable living could be a simple and reasonable act compare with staying to face the reality. But I‘m sure for most of the emigrants, they love their homeland so much & so deep that they just can’t tolerance the unexpected changes, that “hurt” to bleed, the only way out for them is not to face it. 

I've once told myself to leave behind of everything in Hong Kong in these 12 days, no whatsapp, no email, no phone calls, etc...I tried, it‘s difficult because the “link” never breaks no matter where I am ...and where you are!

May God‘s blessing be with you wherever you are!