Oklahoma Is Where I Live: and Other Things on My Mind by Gary Conrad is a series of heartwarming and thought-provoking essays that are reminiscent of another Oklahoma son, Will Rogers.
I gave it five stars because it reminded me of the days of my youth when there was a family get-together and we sat around an old octagonal oak table and told stories from our past.
I found this book to be a treasure chest of gem-like homilies. From the sweetness of a first kiss to an attraction to sugar and the resulting dental work, it kept my attention. The episode of snake capturing actually made me laugh out loud.
Learning the benefits of walking meditation or hiking is described clearly: "Something magical happened when you entered that space and completely concentrated your attention on just hiking. In truth, it's an intense contemplation of sorts.
In meditation, you attempt to bring your mind to a single point of focus, much like the tip of the candle flame. In hiking, your attention is likewise entirely focused. You intensely watch the trail for rocks--so you don't stumble. You gauge your breathing and your pulse rate, for if you become too fatigued the risk of falling increases dramatically. And an added benefit is that Mother Nature is all around nurturing and healing you."
Discussing necessary wall-building to be a medical professional: "Needing protection from this, most students develop what can best be described as an emotional wall, one that not only blocks emotion coming in but also going out. Without the wall, the training experience in medical school is too much, far too much…
Rather than a slow, gentle process, the wall has to be built quickly, not brick-by-brick as a mason might do. It’s much akin to pouring a solid slab of cement, which hardens in moments. It didn’t take long for medical students to recognize that fact, and we recklessly submersed ourselves into the experience, ready and willing to be toughened."
I was unable to build that necessary wall so left nursing after thirteen short years.
I received a complimentary copy from the author. That did not change my opinion for this review.
I had previously read Murder on Easter Island: A Daniel "Hawk" Fishinghawk Mystery and enjoyed it tremendously. Please read my five star review for that book.
I look forward to reading The Lhasa Trilogy next and the upcoming Murder at Stonehenge, the sequel to Murder on Easter Island which will be published soon.
Link to purchase: https://www.amazon.com/Oklahoma-Where-Live-Other-Things-ebook/dp/B00F0P5H1M