Apr 23, 2023

A reader's journey

 "What you missed in your childhood is what you seek in your adulthood" - I don't know the source of this quote, but it pretty much sums up my relationship with books.

Growing up, apart from textbooks, I never read any story books or comics. Amma had bought a few GK and Quiz books that helped me in elocution, essay writing, and quiz competitions in school.

For some reason, there was always a yearning for books. I'd pester Appa to take me to the "Chennai book fair" that used to happen every Jan. He took me once and I was clueless about what to buy. Though I didn't burn a hole in his pocket, he wasn't happy about the trip. The next year, he got irritated when I brought up this topic.

I joined my first job in 2002. A small book fair was conducted at my office premises. I bought APJ Abdul Kalam's Wings of Fire, my first book purchase. Since then, slowly and steadily, the collection of books in my home library increased.

I remember taking a solo trip from BTM to Palace Grounds in 2003 to visit a book fair. No Google Maps or Ola/Uber back then. I had to figure the bus route by switching 2-3 buses in a new city. It felt adventurous and fun!

I bought my first bookshelf in 2005. And it still holds steady with books stuffed to the brim on all 6 shelves. 2 more bookshelves got added, and books started to spill over to my work desk.

K gifted me a Kindle in 2016. More books added to my digital library - some read, some unread.

Kindle Unlimited (KU) subscription is going strong for years. Though I don't use it much these days, D devours all Amar Chitra Katha and Tinkle comics.

In the last 2 decades ever since Wings of Fire arrived, my interest in genres kept changing from self-help, productivity, biography, business, marketing, nutrition, wellness, and behavioral psychology to philosophy and spirituality in my early 40s.

Whenever I visit a bookstore, I feel like a child in a candy store.

D and K make fun of me,

"That's it...she will be here for the whole afternoon. We should go and grab some snacks nearby"

"We need to hire a lorry for this mummy"

A few weeks back, I made a list of expenses I avoid compared to others leading an urban lifestyle. It was quite a long list.

But the one investment (not an expense) I make consciously is towards books as I believe they have been life-changing.

On the occasion of #worldbookday, this is my journey with books as a reader. Someday, I wish to experience the other side of being an author! *Fingers crossed*

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