Art by, Leonid Afremov
Good Sunday morning, dear friends. As I write this (Saturday, 2-19) snowflakes are falling. Not a big storm, just howling winds and quite cold. Yes, winter is still here in West Virginia. However, tomorrow we are promised mild temperatures and sunny skies. I hope you will see the same.
A few weeks ago, I told you how dreadful it is for me to put Christmas away. Although, Christmas remains in my heart every day and the spirit keeps me going forward. But I want you to know ‘mission was accomplished’ and Christmas is now stored in its long deep closet under the basement stairs. Old houses do have hidden treasures and secrets.
With Christmas tucked away, today I want to talk about my books. They are my dear friends and I have done a bit of research that I hope you will find interesting. It helped me realize that I have not lost my mind and that my books are indeed riches. Hopefully, yours are too.
“Books are the carriers of civilization…They are companions, teachers, magicians, bankers of the treasures of the mind. Books are humanity in print.” ~Barbara W. Tuchman.
In the late fall, I promised myself that I would reorganize Christmas ornaments (done), would go through the huge cedar closet upstairs, and the books. The last two items have not been touched. And these last two items are too large to accomplish both of them before spring. Therefore, I chose the huge closet (what I refer to as, ‘the black hole’) which I plan to begin work on this upcoming week.
I am not alone in my love of books or how difficult it is to sort them and find them another home. Several of my blogging friends also have this issue. One such friend is Bren who writes the beautiful blog, “It Is Still A Beautiful Life.” Bren recently wrote a lovely two-part post about her books and she gave me great inspiration to sort through mine, a next winter project. Perhaps her post will inspire you as well. visit here.
“Books cannot be killed by fire. People die, but books never die. No man and no force can put thought in a concentration camp forever. No man and no force can take from the world the books that embody man’s eternal fight against tyranny. In this war, we know, books are weapons.” ~ Franklin D. Roosevelt
Often, I look at my many books and I think, “Have I gone around the bend to treasure them so?” But then I read that in our upside-down world, restricting access to certain books has once again become a ‘trendy’ thing to do. And, I realize that we are in danger, once again, by these actions.
Understand, I realize the restricting of access to certain books may be necessary in such places as school libraries and others I am probably not familiar with. However, we must be careful. When we restrict access to books we are in danger of not learning. When we don’t learn we may become self-absorbed and narrow-minded and we can close ourselves off to the beauty of other people, places, and cultures. All are dangerous in our world today.
A boy sits reading in a bombed bookstore, London, October, 8 1940
And, I realize that even more when I see a photo such as the one above of the young boy and how important reading must have been to him. To be sitting in such a place for the opportunity to read. By the way, 1940 was not that many years ago.
“There are stores that enrich the streets with their presence, and the most precious of them are the shops that sells old books!”~
To come across a bookshop that sells old books is a delightful treat. Old books are special and even though they may be from a different era they still have remarkable information that pertains to our world today.
A bookstore I would love to visit is Shakespeare and Company, located in Paris in the 5th arrondissement (a subdivision). The store was established in 1951.
A wee glimpse inside Shakespeare and Company.
There are many interesting and wonderful bookstores throughout our country and the world. One that intrigues me is the one above. Dog Eared Books, located in San Francisco.
The Abbey Book Store also looks inviting to a book lover. The shop is owned by a Canadian in Paris’s Latin Quarter and opened in 1989. The shop has over 30,000 books.
“Where is human nature so weak as in the bookstore?” ~
“It is clear that the books owned the shop rather than the other way about. Everywhere they had run wild and taken possession of their habitat, breeding and multiplying, and clearly lacking any strong hand to keep them down.” ~
I have no idea where this is. Is it a shop or is it a place of storage? It would be a perfect way to spend a rainy afternoon and of fun to roam around in such a place. But, if there is an inventory I am thankful it wasn’t my job to prepare such a document.
“We’re all strangers connected by what we reveal, what we share, what we take away ~ our stories. I guess that’s what I love about books ~ they are thin strands of humanity that tether us to one another for a small bit of time, that make us feel less alone or even more comfortable with our aloneness, if need be.” ~ Libba Bray
“In the case of good books, the point is not to see how many of them you can get through, but rather how many can get through to you.” ~
“Make it a rule never to give a child a book you would not read yourself.” ~
“If I’m honest I have to tell you I still read fairy-tales and I like them best of all.” ~ Audrey Hepburn
Dear friends, I do hope you have enjoyed my post and that I have not exhausted you to the brink on the subject. It was my intention to give you a little insight into myself, something which is out of my comfort zone. Hopefully, I have been successful and possibly given you le inspiration should you not be an avid reader.
Know I wish you and yours a beautiful day
And. . .
May beautiful words find you wherever you are. Write them down ~ won’t you?
“The best moments in reading are when you come across something – a thought, a feeling, a way of looking at things – which you had thought special and particular to you. Now here it is, set down by someone else, a person you have never met, someone even who is long dead. And it is as if a hand has come out and taken yours.” ~
I will leave you with something wonderful that happened to me yesterday. I received a splendid gift from my special friend of many years, Janice. She sent me “Kitchen Confidential” by Anthony Bourdain as she knew it was on my list to read. She is such a thoughtful friend and will be with me while I am reading and every time I see the book. It will certainly be one I do not part with. Books do tie us together.