300 short stories:: story 208

story: “The Salt Garden”

author: Margaret Atwood

year: 1983

where: Dubai, Common Ground

note: I adore this collection and find the protagonist Alma to be so layered.

a line: “She can’t remember ever having astonished any of her friends with tricks from the instruction book. Astonishing herself was enough.”

theme(s): time

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300 short stories:: story 106

story: St. Clair Flats

author: Constance Fenimore Woolson

year: 1873

where: Dubai and Abu Dhabi

note: For half the story I thought the main characters were a woman and a man, and I considered this extraordinary for its time (late 19th century) since the characters seemed to be unmarried and not the least perturbed to ‘Lewis and Clark’ around the American Great Lakes, but alas, I learned the characters were two male companions!

a line: “How boundless is looks! One hill in the distance, one dark line of forest, even one tree, would break its charm. I have seen the ocean, I have seen the prairies, I have seen the great desert, but this is like a mixture of the three. It is an ocean full of land, –a prairie full of water, –a desert full of verdure.’”

100 short stories:: story 96

story: Spring in Fialta 

author: Vladimir Nabokov

year: 1936 (English 1947)

where: Dubai,  Al Habtoor Polo Resort

note: sometimes on an ordinary day, you need to read a masterpiece

a line: “And regardless of what happened to me or to her, in between, we never discussed anything, as we never thought of each other during the intervals in our destiny, so that when we met the pace of life altered at once, all its atoms were recombined, and we lived in another, lighter time-medium, which was measured not by the lengthy separations but by those few meetings of which a short, supposedly frivolous life was thus artificially formed. ”