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When I read about the “world’s smallest Austen museum” in a red telephone box in Steventon, Hampshire, in a recent Atlas Obscura piece, I could almost hear Joel Plaskett singing “I am standing in The Last Phone Booth on The Planet Earth / Just trying to get an operator / Please connect me now to anyone.”

This red telephone box is obviously not the one in Hampshire. It’s in Nova Scotia’s Gaspereau Valley, at Luckett Vineyards. I added a digital frame as part of an assignment for an online photography class I took several years ago (taught by the always-inspiring Joy Sussman of Joyfully Green).

I took another photo from the same spot during the Jane Austen Society (UK) conference that was held in Halifax in June of 2017. Following lunch at the vineyard, our group visited the memorial church and the statue of Evangeline at Grand Pré National Historic Site.

The telephone box Jane Austen museum also functions as a book exchange, like a Little Free Library, or the book stalls in Bonn that my sister Bethie checks regularly to look for English books.

She recently found two different editions of Tom Jones, which she took as a sign that she should read it right away, and she loved it. She sent me a photo of a few of her treasures. The most unusual book she’s discovered there is a German cookbook featuring recipes from ancient Rome, which appealed to her because she’s a Classics scholar.

A few more things for this week’s “scrapbook”:

First, a blog post by Donna M. Campbell: “First Edition of The House of Mirth: A Literary/Bibliographical Mystery.”

Did you know that Edith Wharton hated the illustrations for this novel so much that she tore them out and crossed out the illustrator’s name?? I didn’t (or if I did, I had forgotten).

The mystery has to do with whether the first edition, first printing of The House of Mirth is the one without ads or the one with ads included on pages 535-38.

I own two early editions of the novel, both published by Scribner’s, one in 1905 and the other in 1931. The 1905 edition includes the ads, which—I think, based on what Donna says in her blog post—means it may be the first edition, first printing. The 1931 edition used to belong to the library of Leverett House, Harvard University. The cloth on the spine is torn and the book has been mended in a few places. Fortunately, the 1905 edition is much better condition.

If this were a real scrapbook, I might be tempted to affix this adorable origami frog—made by the sister of one of my friends, who enclosed it with a card she sent me a few days ago (hello and thank you, Sandra and Brenda!)—to one of the pages. But then my family and I wouldn’t be able to press on its back to make it leap across our dining room table. So I’ll just include a photo here, and leave it free to keep moving.

Here are some photos from a hike with friends last Sunday, on the snowy trails at Long Lake. Whenever I see that bright blue sky, I’m tempted to take lots of pictures. On this occasion I managed to snap only a few, however, because I spent much of the time trying to prevent our dog from running out onto the ice, just in case it isn’t frozen solid anymore.

Halifax, as seen from the Dartmouth waterfront on Sunday evening:

On Monday, the clouds had returned. When I went downtown for an appointment that afternoon, I took a couple of pictures of the Old Burying Ground, which served as the inspiration for “Old St. John’s Graveyard” in L.M. Montgomery’s Anne of the Island.

“I don’t know that a graveyard is a very good place to go to get cheered up, but it seems the only get-at-able place where there are trees, and trees I must have. I’ll sit on one of those old slabs and shut my eyes and imagine I’m in the Avonlea woods.”

– Anne Shirley

On Tuesday evening, I visited the Truro Library, to hear Alexander MacLeod read from his brilliant short story collection Animal Person. If you’re interested, you can listen to him read his story “Once Removed,” which was published in the New Yorker last year.

I tried to capture the lights on the trees next to the library, and this is what I ended up with:

It isn’t what I expected, but I like it even more this way, so I’ll keep it.

Here are a couple of things linked to last week’s post, “Oh, novels! What would I do without you?”

I found photos of the second Regency gown I made for my daughter. Here she is at age nine, when we attended the JASNA AGM in Washington, DC:

And here’s a link to The Next Chapter on CBC Radio, where you can listen to Heidi L.M. Jacobs talking about her novel Molly of the Mall: “Heidi L.M. Jacobs’s novel Molly of the Mall is a charming look at life in Edmonton.”

“It’s a book about finding out who you are by navigating where you’re from and also about finding the beautiful and the poetic in wherever you live. But I think at its core it’s really about how books help us learn who we are and about how books help us find a space and a place and a voice in the world.”

I’ll say goodbye for now and leave you with this photo of two parrots, a fox, and a dragon, created and photographed by Brenda Barry of Triad Photography. Thanks for reading, and I hope you have a pleasant weekend.