I'm always reading something. I belong to a wonderful community of readers, writers, librarians and lunatics over on LibraryThing.com, a website originally designed to allow people to keep track of the books they own. The social aspects of the site took off in ways I don't think the founders anticipated, and now it is hard for me to remember what life was like BLT. I was always a reader, but there isn't any math to explain how my literary universe has expanded since I joined Library Thing. I comment on the books I read on my own personal thread there. I probably won't blog about all of the books I'm reading, especially the ones I think are well known already. But from time to time, if I find something exceptional that might not be on the common radar, I'll highlight it here. Such is the case with a book called Gotcha Covered: A Legacy of Service and Protection, edited by Ginger T. Manley.
I read it because my mother enthusiastically lent it to me over the weekend, and I found it thoroughly delightful. Ginger Manley is married to some degree of cousin of mine, which I always fail to calculate properly. Her husband's grandmother and my grandmother were first cousins...I think. ANYWAY...Ginger and her husband, who live in Tennessee, recently visited my Mom in NE PA, and Ginger gave her a copy of this book. When Ginger's great-aunt moved out of her farmhouse and turned over a collection of vintage domestic aprons to her, Ginger and her classmates from the Vanderbilt School of Nursing (Class of 1966) were motivated to create The Nurses' Apron Partnership to help nurses provide services they might not otherwise be able to manage. This book is an anthology of creative pieces inspired by those old aprons, which are featured in photographs at the beginning of each selection. Most are reflections or reminiscences; there are a few poems, some short fiction, a delightful collage, and the beautiful watercolor which graces the cover. The proceeds from sales of the book go to Burning Bush, Inc., a micro-credit organization established by a former Vanderbilt nursing instructor, to make educational loans to the Mt. Kenya cluster of Private Nurse Practitioners, who provide the majority of maternity and primary care to women in their area. You are unlikely to find this book in your local library or bookstore, but if you are inclined to help make a difference in a small way, while giving your eyes and heart a treat, you can purchase a copy through the TNAP website linked above.