When I was in school, I had this friend who had this fancy family that would tour all around the world every holiday, and I remember thinking to myself, when I got bigger – bigger than 12, I would make a lot of money and go see the world too, it seemed like the cool thing to do.
What we didnt’t have in money, we were blessed with books and imagination. Every occasion called for gifts that were stories bound by covers and had a lot of words in them, words that would take you to different worlds, and sometimes take you around this world.
That was the gift of reading, of imagining, of traveling without leaving home. My parents gave us books, by authors like Enid Blyton, Francis Hodgson, Victor Hugo, Jules Verne and story compilations- those 365 stories series, 365 fairy tales, 365 nature tales, 365 inventions… one story for every day, one adventure for every day, one unforgettable experience for every day.
My most favourite book, beside the giant Peter Pan book that I still have was 365 nature stories.
It was a journal of the world, filled with illustrations of birds and animals, seasons in countries I had never seen, of creatures I had never heard of.
My goodness how I miss illustrated books..
But it was where my fascination for drawing and of illustrations were born, and at the heart of it all, it still seems to inspire me today.
Time is always short when you have a book adventure you are have to go on, and time sure seemed short then, it seems so far away now.
Just 2 weeks ago, we packed all our Harry Potter books, gave it away to my Mother’s friends children, and I couldn’t help thinking that’s one childhood being passed on to another. In those books, they will find their favourite parts, and they will discuss them, they will learn new words, and travel to different places, and those worn out pages will be the vehicle for someone else’s adventure… that’s the beauty of reading.
That makes me happy, for what is life without great stories
I may not have traveled or have any foreign country stamps in my passport, but I think I have already seen some of the world, and now that I am bigger than 12, I hope I get to see this wonderful world and write my own stories about it.
Here’s to stories, and illustrated books.