Thursday, April 2, 2015

Blessing of being a BIBLIOPHILE- in the memory of my late father

                                       Blogging from A to Z Challenge [April 2015 ]



In the various homes that I have lived in since I ever remember there was always less space and more books. On the shelves, side tables, bed boxes even wardrobes. My mother who was herself a teacher and is an avid reader till date did not understand me- as to what kind of a girl would put her dresses aside to make more room for books.

Where did I get my first taste of books from?

As old timers in Shimla will tell you, in the extreme last segment of shops on The Mall, towards the HPTDC lift there used to be the old Asia Book House. Whenever and that means every time I would go there papa would buy me a book- a book to read, a sketchbook, a drawing book anything that had a world of wonder enclosed in its covers.

My first ever that I remember clearly was the abridged version of The Count of Monte Cristo. Then came the write-n-wipe ones which were such a novelty then, the hardbound, the imported ones,the fiction, biographies. I was given every genre to try my hands on.

For every small or big achievement, for every occasion I was given a book, memberships to libraries and every possibly opportunity to have and read books. Books are my ticket to the millions of lives I can't possibly live in this one, guardian angels who never give up on me.

I always feel that best fragrance on this planet is not some exotic bottled perfume,  next in line to the fragrance of fresh rain on the parched soil is the fragrance of old books, of libraries, of book stores.

My father himself was not an avid reader. Most of the books he had were technical/professional but he took great care of them and loved them. He had once told me that when he was an engineering student there were no Xerox machines so if one student had a particular sought after book there used to be a waiting list in college to get that book for one day.

So maybe he ensured that I will have no waiting list for books. A day he passed away I was reading Tuesdays with Morrie and a line stood out - Death ends a life not a relationship.

After he passed away,as is customary,I was giving away his things but I kept back one of his books- Industrial Engineering. A hard bound, faded grey cover, from his student days. Its subject matter means nothing to me, but its yellow pages will always remind me that one of my best blessings from my father is my love for books.

Strangely my little one loves books too and I hope some day she knows that this love for books is a blessing.

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To Kill a Mockingbird
The Catcher in the Rye
Animal Farm
The Alchemist
One Hundred Years of Solitude
Romeo and Juliet
The Odyssey
The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn
The Count of Monte Cristo
Eat, Pray, Love
The Da Vinci Code
The Kite Runner
The Silence of the Lambs
The Diary of a Young Girl
Pride and Prejudice
Jane Eyre
The Notebook
Gone With the Wind

The Human Bean Cafe, Ontario

The Human Bean Cafe, Ontario
my work on display there !!!!!