My least favorite 2019 Christmas present was a ginormous book titled Alexander Hamilton by Ron Chernow that my husband gave me. I love reading. I have a number of books on my Amazon wishlist. This 731 page history book was not one of them. When I pulled the massive, heavy book out of the gift bag, I immediately felt great confusion and tried to figure out how to react to this very unexpected gift from the love of my life. Did I accidentally put this on my wishlist? Why would I ever want to read this? raced through my mind. Ryan quickly explained to me that this was the very book that had been the inspiration for the Hamilton Broadway musical. That piqued my interest but did not make the task of reading this book full of history facts seem any more achievable.
On the other hand, my favorite 2019 Christmas present came just after opening this seemingly boring book. Ryan announced that we were going to go see Hamilton at the Fox Theater in Atlanta. I’ve never been to the iconic Fox Theater despite living in Atlanta for over 16 years now. Honestly, I’m not that into Broadway shows, but I did want to at least go to the Fox once. Hamilton was the perfect fit for me. All winter, I eagerly anticipated the event with the excitement only escalating.
The tickets were for April 28, 2020. Tonight. During quarantine.
So, yeah. There went that favorite gift. (Technically, we’re rescheduled to go later in 2020. We’ll see how that actually pans out.)
Around the same time I found out about the postponement, the shelter-in-place finally went into effect for my area. The whole month of April would be spent at home. Life was feeling very out of control. Normally I love reading, but with the world turned upside down, nothing was appealing. Then the big hardback book that had been silently waiting on my bedside table for months caught my attention. It was time. I finally had a true desire to read this book. Maybe I couldn’t go to the show, but I sure could read the book that inspired the show. Or at least make a valiant attempt.
So, I started reading.
Then I grabbed a pen. I started underlining. A lot. I wanted to understand this book. Remember as many details as possible.
Just as I was shocked to receive this gift, I was shocked to discover that I absolutely love this book. Completely, whole-hardheartedly, genuinely love it! Every single time I read some of it, if my husband is around, I tell him, “This book is soooo good. I love this book!” And I mean it. It’s fascinating.
How am I handling missing Hamilton tonight? I’ll once again enjoy John Krasinski’s Zoom surprise for a disappointed nine-year old girl who also missed the show. Then, I’ll read my favorite quarantine book.