“What a miracle it is that out of these small, flat, rigid squares of paper unfolds world after world after world, worlds that sing to you, comfort and quiet or excite you. Books help us understand who we are and how we are to behave. They show us what community and friendship mean; they show us how to live and die.” — Anne Lamott
I’ve lived in Dubai, a speck of what you would call a proper big city in the middle of vast expansions of dessert since I was three years old, but not until I was 14 did I develop a need to to read, yes read, why do people find that strange?( I finished a 600 paged book in a week.. yes it was that bad). I usually got my books from school, but I had heard tales of a bigger source from which one could get books, a source that’s better than most public libraries out there… a large gathering of readers coming together to buy lots of books of all sorts for cheap prices, I was finally able to visit one… well, somewhat. The fair I went to was called the ”pink book fair”. People donated their old books that they didn’t have anymore use for and then this organisation sold them at low costs to the general public and the proceeds went to a breast cancer trust fund.
Unfortunately I didn’t get to properly savor it, I arrived five minutes before it closed. Yes, there I was standing in front of hundreds and hundreds of books with a little more than five minutes to spare, well if it was anything it was a MAD DASH.
I immediately took to analyzing their spines (gosh that sounds weird) some were aged and some were new. From an outsiders point of view it would have looked like a crazed 18 year old running from one stall to another searching his eyes out like as if he was trying to find the meaning of life in a few minutes, and it just so happened to lay in a bunch of books at some random fair . Yes I was desperate, but which crazed book enthusiast wouldn’t be? it is not everyday that someone happens upon intact books which were selling for next to nothing. As I went from book to book I began to wonder about them each one was second hand which means they were once read with great care by someone who truly valued them or they were just given to someone as a gift and they had never bothered to read them, each book had a story to tell. I wondered that if I read a book that maybe I could uncover its story and I mean its actual story not just the story that’s written on its pages (facepalm)
So when the tired looking man at the stall shouted ” ONE MINUTE LEFT” I looked at the bag they provided to put the books you want in, sadly it appeared to be empty so I cursed fate in the worst oath I could think of, overreaction? I think not.
I sighed deeply, reluctantly letting the thought of violently grabbing a bunch of books and running of into the night like a madman.
I looked at the books again wondering about them… So I asked the man behind the desk ”So uh.. what’s going to happen to all of the books?” he smiled and gave me an odd look (maybe the look was because he saw me running around so much) and said ”oh their all going to be locked up until the people who organized this decide to do it again”
Oh no! what if they decide to never do it again! the books will get lonely with no one to read them ( I can tell no one that that went through my mind)
I then slowly walked passed the isles not looking back walking back where I came from.
- Getting Ready for a Book Fair (thethingsthatcatchmyeye.wordpress.com)