I always pounce on the Wall Street Journal’s “Weekend Edition” to zero in on its “Off Duty” and “Review” sections, gems for the culturally curious. This weekend did not disappoint for there was the novelist and essayist Paul Theroux penning the “Word Craft” column, specifically opining on why he spends “nearly all of my traveling life with a notebook in one hand and a pen in the other.”
Oh happy day, another note-taker and one of literary fame. Leave the computer (and a host of other electronic devices he lists) at home, Theroux urges: “No electronics…just ink and paper.” And love this: “A notebook takes on a friendly character, the patina of its daily use, its doodles and coffee stains. It becomes an indispensable artifact of the trip, glowing with revelation.”
And speaking of trips, “The Last Train to Zona Verde: My Ultimate African Safari,” Theroux’s latest odyssey, hits bookstores Tuesday.
Theroux may be the ultimate traveling man, as evidenced by his writings. Maybe it’s the Cancerian in me, but I’m a nester and always feel just a little bit off when I’m not writing in that room of my own, surrounded by my stuff – photos, file folders, chotskies and books galore.