This morning I wondered what I would be doing instead of going to class if I was not who I am. If I had been less ambitious or more ambitious or had been interested in something completely different. If I had been given a different name. If I had been born a week earlier or a week later. If I had been born male.
I wondered what my life would have been like if I opted to do something more menial, simple. Would I be a cashier at a fast food restaurant? Would I be a secretary? Would I be a bum living off my parents? If I had opted for something more (or less) challenging, would I be happy or miserable? Would I appreciate the details of life more or would I go through each day oblivious to everything around me? Would I simply not know any better?
Do I know any better in the situation I am in now?
* * *
Several months ago, I gave up waiting for Water: Tales of Elemental Spirits (by Robin McKinley and her husband Peter Dickinson, both mainly young adult fiction writers) to come out on paperback so I started prowling the bookstores for a hardcopy. Unfortunately, the bookstores around here don’t even stock it in hardcopy. However I did finally manage to snag a copy that the library recently acquired. I’ve read three of the stories and have felt rather let down. They’re nice for young kids, perhaps, as they might overlook the weak plotlines and descriptions. I didn’t get into Peter Dickinson’s writing at all and Robin McKinley’s stories seemed forced. If she is trying to appease her fans or writing out of a sense of obligation, it shows. I would rather read really good books coming out every ten years rather than mediocre stories more frequently.