Tuesday, February 4, 2014

A visit to Milledgeville

This past weekend Matt's parents watched Lance and Matt and I took an hour and a half drive to Milledgeville.  It was the capital city of Georgia from 1804 to 1868.  The main capital building looks like a castle.  
The main reason we visited Milledgeville was to take a tour of the house of Flannery O'Connor called Andalusia.  It is where the famous novelist and short story writer spent the last third of her life.  Matt and I were the only ones there (along with the tour guide).  I asked about her love life, and the guide told us that she was once involved with a traveling text book salesman.  He later moved out of the country and became engaged to another woman.  If you haven't read the short story Good Country People, you might want to check out how she exacted her literary revenge!  We then walked around the house and grounds.

She loved to keep peacocks and at one point has almost fifty of them...
Matt wanted to take a picture of the old water pump...
 We also drove a few miles down the road to visit her grave.  She is buried next to her parents.  She had Lupus, and she passed away when she was only 39.  I remember that she was fairly young, but I didn't know she as that young.  I guess it just really moved me because that is how old I am now.
If you aren't familiar with her works, you might want to go by the library and check out her anthology.  It includes novels, short stories, and many letters. 
We bought the anthology a few years ago, and it sits lovingly on the bookshelf.  I get brave and read her every now and then.  She is a very intense writer.  It is difficult to describe her writing style other than to say that she writes some really deep and thought provoking work.  Matt's dad once mentioned that he likes her writing because there is always an underlying theme of redemption.  The anthology cover describes her this way, "By birth a native of Georgia and a Roman Catholic, O'Connor depicts the limits of worldly wisdom and the mysteries of divine grace in the 'Christ-haunted' Protestant South."  

I have read Wise Blood, A Good Man is Hard to Find, Good Country People, and a few of her letters.  I tried reading The Violent Bear it Away, but I just couldn't get through it.  She is one of those writers who are taken well in small doses.  I'll leave you with my favorite quote from her which was a in a letter she wrote to a friend, "It is better to be held to the church by habit than to not be held at all."   

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  1. I'll have to add her to my reading list! I've never heard of her before. What a fun date with your husband! The grounds look beautiful!

  2. That sounds like a fun mini-getaway and I'll definitely have to check her out. You have me curious as to what her writing is like...

  3. I'm following you also! I love all the book reviews...I need some new ideas! :) We are in South Carolina, and I am noticing that you are our neighbors over in Georgia! We are in Greenville :)


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