That might say 'We've arrived' or it might say something else entirely, because you never can quite trust babelfish, but oh allelulia because I was seriously worried that the limping horses might not make it across the line but after a year on the troika
WE HAVE FINISHED WAR AND PEACE
Sorry to shout but it seems necessary
Did we agree last month that Tolstoy could write the battles and the drawing rooms but endings might not be his forte??
Perhaps he wasn't quite sure how to let War and Peace go. The tying up of loose ends was all well and fine and it was good to know what happened next, like Count Rostov 'going off his legs' as we used to say in old and probably very non-PC nursing speak. Then suddenly out of nowhere Pierre and Natasha have legions of children too, and so do Marya and Nikolai and I got the feeling that Tolstoy had just had enough of them all and couldn't wait to move onto the next thing. I'm not sure I can blame him for that after giving us 1358 pages.
Then how can I not mention Anna Makarovna's double knitting, producing two stockings on the needles, one inside the other at the same time. I found some details on Wikipaedia and am wondering if this might be how it's done...
An even simpler slip-stitch pattern generates two fabrics at once on the same needle. Consider the pattern: * knit 1, slip 1 wyif *. At the end of the row, turn the work. Then knit the stitches that were slipped and slip (again wyif) the stitches that were knitted. In the end, one should obtain a "pocket" that can be opened (be sure to use wyif slip-stitches during binding off as well!) The wyif slip stitch prevents the yarn from crossing over to the back fabric, so that only the front fabric is knitted in any row. This is probably the secret technique of Anna Makarovna from from Tolstoy's War and Peace who always knit two socks simultaneously
But much of this Epilogue felt rather uncomfortable too because wasn't the relationship between Pierre and Natasha mirroring that of Lev and Sonia?
And all the time I was reading and thinking... the mean old codger, your poor wife is reading this in order to write it out properly for you and look what you're saying...
So to the rest of the Epilogue... alright I skimmed and surfed so did anyone get anything from that??
If so I'm hoping you can enlighten the rest of us.
I'm not sure I have the same sense of rejoicing at reaching the end of War and Peace as I did with Ulysses. I emerged from Team Ulysses feeling elated and enthused, went shopping in Launceston and wanted to tell everyone I passed in the street that I had just finished Ulysses...
Yes Ulysses really, and I am about to pick it up and read some of it again, alongside Terence Killeen's book Ulysses Unbound, which came highly recommended during my visit to the 'Feel the Fear and Read it Anyway' session at The Flying Book Club whilst I was in Dublin.
But let none of that detract from what has been another amazing year long read with all of you, and how grateful I am to those who have joined in, read along and commented, or who have been cheering along from the sidelines, and had the samovar bubbling as the troika rolled in each month.
My thanks to Oxford University Press who helped us out with some prize copies of that gorgeous edition in the early days, and who have faithfully re-tweeted our troika stops to the masses over in twitterland.
To those who have fallen off the troika, don't be disheartened, at least you have a copy of the book for another day and the Team Tolstoy link , and not forgetting the helpful bookmark which has saved my bacon every month. So you could always follow our snow trails if you had the War and Peace urge anytime.
To those who fell off and climbed back on, Lev would have been proud of you.
And to those who stayed the course, well what can I say, have another blini...and go on add some vareneki to your plate, I've been up all night baking those, you deserve it. I know how hard this has been some months, because I've had a few dodgy ones myself... so how was it for you?