Thursday, June 7, 2018

Scenes from the Bus: Letterkenny to Killybegs

We had to make a quick run to Letterkenny this morning and we managed to make the early bus home. I love looking out the window on these journeys--the landscape through which we move is so beautiful and gives me such a feeling of peace.

I took a few snaps out the window. There will be some odd reflections in some because of this, but here they are anyway.
between Letterkenny and Fintown
just past Fintown

just past Fintown
stacked turf between Fintown and Glenties
colourful scene on Main St, Glenties
fast food truck in Ardara--I've not eaten food from here, but the name is cute
Also, since we were in transition at the end of May/beginning of June, I didn't do my monthly books post. I'll add a couple to the end of the next several posts.

The Murder Room by PD James
This is, I think, the penultimate Adam Dalgliesh book in which he and his team investigate a death at a small private museum devoted to the the UK in the years between the world wars. One of the rooms is filled with exhibits about notorious murders that took place during that time so it is nicknamed The Murder Room. The museum is owned by three siblings--it has been passed down through the family--but there is a stipulation that when a new lease is to be signed, all must agree. As the book opens, it is time to consider the new lease, but one of the siblings does not agree that the museum should continue, in spite of the plans the other two have for making changes and improvements.

Lost Connections: Uncovering the Real Causes of Depression and the Unexpected Solutions by Johann Hari
A friend sent me a blurb about this book and it piqued my interest, so I requested it from the library. I do not have a background in psychology, but from my anthropological perspective, it has seemed to me for a long time that people living in consumer capitalist systems are living in cultures which are not adaptive, in many ways, to human well-being. High rates of depression do not, therefore, seem surprising. I’ve also suffered from serious depression myself, and know to expect my annual depression, which is not as severe as depression that I've experienced in the past, every spring. This lasts through summer. So I was interested when I read that this author (who grew up in the UK) argues that the usual story told by medical professionals about depression is wrong. He became interested in the topic because he suffers from depression and started taking medication for it when he was a teenager. He says he became something of an evangelist, encouraging friends to get prescriptions, too. As time went on, he had to increase the dose, but he was still a believer. One day his therapist said he was surprised that Johann felt they were working, because he still seemed depressed. Johann had an attitude of, as he puts it, ‘pissy superiority.’ The therapist brought it up again at various times and one day, the idea stuck. So the author began to investigate the research regarding depression and he went to various parts of the world talking to the researchers. He makes a convincing case that there is much about our societies and cultures that leads to depression. I am uncomfortable stating that these things are always the cause of depression and that it is never a result of brain chemistry--I simply do not know enough about it from that perspective. But it was a worthwhile read that taught me a lot and gave me new ways to think about my own experiences and relationship with depression.

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