Jan 31, 2018

In pursuit of a hobby

Recently, someone asked me what were my hobbies. I really had to think about how to answer him.

Eventually I concluded I didn’t seem to have any hobbies.

All around me, people have hobbies. Our own LoveCat Stefanie London is sewing beautiful clothes. A friend is knitting socks and gloves and sweaters that don’t need stitching together using circular needles and intricate stitches that have me mindboggled. Another friend’s house is filled with the most beautiful tapestries—I’ve begged her to leave me her cushion covers in her will. Another has taken up painting and has found she has a real talent for it. (Guess I might be talking to her about her will, too!)

But me?

I ask my husband what he thinks my hobbies might be. “Your iPad, you’re never off the thing,” he says.

“But I’m a writer,” I whine. “I have to be in touch with the world.”

“Okay, so Facebook is your hobby,” he says.

Does Facebook count as a hobby? I enjoy it as much for the social contact—and the cat and dog photos—as the writerly stuff. So maybe.

Hubby’s hobby, by the way is his bicycle. Yes, he’s a MAMAL—a middle aged man in Lycra—who takes his cycling very seriously indeed. Along with it comes a high level of physical fitness about which I’m not complaining.

I looked up “hobby” to find that its definition is a “leisure pursuit for fun”. So that’s the problem. I don’t have much leisure. Not with books to write and publicise and family and housework and four cats and two horses and other animals to feed and look after.

I ask a close friend what she thinks my hobbies are. “Gardening? Cooking?” she suggests.

“Do they count as leisure time pursuits?” I ask. “There’s a good deal of work involved there.”

She tries again. “Taking photos of your garden and your food and your cats putting them on Instagram?”

“I guess so,” I say, not totally convinced.

So I look back at my life—at the dressmaking and knitting I used to do and the embroidery I always wanted to do. At the swimming I still do and the golf I’d like to get back to. And I conclude that the thing I’ve always liked to do in my leisure time and what I think I’ll always want to do is read. Books, books and more books. Newspapers. Magazines. Articles on the internet. At any opportunity, in every spare moment, I read. Reading is my very first choice of leisure activity no matter how small the time available.

Can I count reading as my hobby? What do you think? Can we have a vote here? What about your hobbies? Care to share? I’d love to read your comment!


  1. Hi Kandy

    I have to agree with you I vote yes for reading because it is what I do :) in years gone by I used to knit and I have done a bit of embroidery but these days it is reading and social media I am not a gardener or big with the cooking. I do sometimes envy people who get in and do lots of sewing etc but if I did that I wouldn't have as much time for reading, you see there is a theme for me :)

    Have Fun


  2. I scrapbook because it needs to be done, although I DO enjoy sharing my albums with others. I am ALWAYS working on the mending pile, whether by hand (we go through a lot of socks in this family, what with steel-toed shoes for daily work) or with the sewing machine (but only for mending, as I haven't made anything from scratch since high school home-ec classes).
    For FUN, though? The above just don't count as fun....
    Well, I have read over 250 books every single year since 1973, so that counts. I watch TV for fun by recording my shows and fast-forwarding through commercials and boring-to-me sections. I play competitive badminton several nights a week and the occasional weekend tournament for fun AND for well-needed exercise, although if I didn't need to exercise, I would probably give up badminton, despite doing so well at it and having so many friends, but more so because I do so much WORK for the various badminton clubs locally. And oh yeah! I blog/email with authors; definitely fun for me!
    Like Helen, I used to knit (only scarves) and embroider (only pillowcases), but I also hooked rugs (which my son enjoyed using through the years). Whenever I am at my sister's or brother's house, I "help" them with jigsaw puzzles or play card/board games. I do Sudoku puzzle variations to wind down before bedtime. I don't consider shopping fun and would stay home 100% of the time instead, but I DO consider finding bargains fun. The same thing goes for cooking: I could live without cooking the rest of my life, but I DO enjoy making yummy food for others.
    BTW, my husband is 68 and rides his bike 50+ miles most sunny days (and on most of his days off for maybe 20 years before he retired), although not in Lycra. His legs are in great shape and he comes home extremely happy with his adventures each time.