10 January 2013

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Breathe a Book


Reading is an alternate universe; A world set apart where I can escape from anywhere, at any moment.  I can travel to Paris or Rome from the comfort of my favorite arm chair.  Or, meet aliens in the forest that vaguely resembles my back yard, a few times a month.  I’ve met Queens of England on the subway, the Duke of Cornwall in my pajamas and various members of the CIA never noticed I’ve taken them into the bathtub.  Reading is one of my very cool super powers!
  A visit to the local library is far more enticing to me than a trip to a travel agent.  In the city where I live, the same wall poster of Bermuda has been proudly mounted in the office window for years.  The panorama is gorgeous!  But the tropical islands of Dr Murrow or Robinson Carusoe are not found anywhere in their brochures, and their vacation packages are never free.  Every so often, I’ll wander the silent aisles within the library touching the bindings, remembering each book as a past vacation I took in my mind.  The only passport I’ve been diligent to keep updated is my library card.
  Public transportation is a perfect opportunity to get lost in another place, or time.  Errands are warisome until I settle in and find the book marked page of my latest thriller.  Locked in suspense, my eyes are glued to the page.  Suddenly, each bus stop approaches too quickly.  On the metro, in the tunnels, oblivious to the weather outside, I rock and sway along with the lead characters.  Sporting T-shirts and shorts they content themselves with sifting their toes in the sun-baked sand along the coastline.  It’s so easy for me to forget the sleeting ice-storm outside assaulting the train station.  The idea to carry a paperback in my pocketbook was a stroke of pure genius.
  Now that I’ve grown older, reading is in the top ten of my survival skills.  Where would I rather be?  A dentist office: fidgeting in the waiting room dreading a root canal appointment? Give me a younger version of myself being swept off my feet by Brad Pitt, in a romance novel by Nora Roberts.  Where else can I go to, but a book; If I’m trapped in a locked ward of some type of institution?  “Say Hello to my little friend”.  A small bundle of paper bound together with string; the key to my sanity.
  St. Augustine once wrote, “The world is a book and those who don’t travel read only a page.”  My version writes, “If stuck in a small world, read a book; In case you can’t travel, get lost in each page.”  Take a moment and escape right where you are, breathe a book.

2 comments:

  1. I had an aunt who had not travelled much out of the south. Of course if you are a southerner then the south has everything you want/need. But back to Anna Lou. She did not graduate from any formal school but she was the brightest, most insightful, thoughtful, person I have ever known. And she read EVERYTHNG - including the cereal boxtops. She also taught me to listen before I speak (not learned well), wait to see who your friends are, consider everything but be discriminating in who or what you take home, and enjoy life - all of it. She used the written word to transport her to parts unknown and to infuse her with understanding.

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  2. Writing was and still is one of my survival skills. I am very fortunate to have been taught to read and write. Fortunate to have been raised by my grandmother who had never finished grade school due to the need to work and support the family when her husband went to war and then the great depression. I think of her pearls of wisdom at the oddest of moments, and wish I had become a better person for it.

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