Imperfect Notebooks

I began to write about the writing and meditation workshop/retreat I took at Kripalu Center last weekend, and realized I might have to edit it into bite-sized chunks. Such an unpleasant word, chunks, no?

I’ll start with the problem I made with which notebook to take with me on the retreat.

My husband asked what notebook I”m going to take because there was a really cool German Leuchtterm one that Warren Ellis tweeted about, here.


Some commenters said it wasn’t good for fountain pens, which I use, because they bleed through the paper of the Leuchtterm. Those commenters instead liked the Rodia large webnotebook at Levenger, here


Ooh, orange, I thought. I love orange. I spent quite a lot of time shopping for journals, time I might otherwise have been reading, writing or keeping house. Eventually, I selflessly decided not to spend $35 or anything at all and I’d just take a regular pad of paper or the current journal I’m writing in and don’t love but it still has space.

Aren’t I a writing-retreat martyr, and selfless and frugal to boot?


But then I had a writing date at Barnes & Noble and thought I’d just take a quick peek at the journals and see if that had the one I’d passed on a couple times with the leather cover and labyrinth pattern. They didn’t, but while I “just peeked” I saw a super pretty one with green plaid.


Then, I saw the cherry blossom one, and I had to grab a stool to reach up and get it and oh, my, it was lovely with a leather cover made in Italy, and cherry blossoms which I love EVEN MORE THAN PLAID and that MUST certainly be a sign, right?


I showed my friends, who said to buy it, and emailed my husband asking if he thought it was OK if I buy it for my birthday and he said:

“If you must.”

which of course means no, but I was going to do it anyway and my friends said, do it! You’re going on a retreat! Plus, I felt he was just being snarky because he wanted me to buy that one that Warren Ellis recommended.

On the way out of the store, something unexpected happened. I put the cherry blossoms back on the self, said goodbye and maybe someday but not that day, and walked out.

Once again I felt very proud and selfless and frugal. When I got home, my husband was not nearly impressed enough by my self sacrifice. He never is.

The next day I spelunked in the house and my office for what paper/notebooks I already had that would work beyond the one I’d already thought of. You know, just in case I had another.

I found eight. EIGHT. One unopened one would have been perfect, but instead I took another I was midway through, and didn’t take my fancy fountain pen, and just a cheap Field Notes ball point, and guess what?


You totally guessed that, didn’t you? So did the retreat. But more on that later.

One Response to “Imperfect Notebooks”

  1. carolyn Says:

    heh. I am notebook obsessed right now, girlie. I feel ya!