Guest contribution by Lalitha
My Childhood in Books
Just like Alice found her wonderland in the rabbit hole, I found mine with books. Books have been an intricate part of me right from my childhood. There are such fond memories that I have with books that until very recently I didn’t realize how much they have been a part of me. As a child I was always happy about the library hour during the week in the school. My elementary school library was small but filled with books that always stole a part of my heart.
I remember, discussing with my friend after the long summer vacation about how much I enjoyed reading the entire series of “The Famous Five” by one of my favourite authors Enid Blyton. She on the other hand, was a great fan of the other series “The Secret Seven” by the same author. Later on, my interests developed further, and I still remember rushing to the library after the last bell rang to issue some of my favourite fictions before someone else picked them.
Slowly, as I grew older, the pressure to study was more than I actually imagined. I had to give up on my reading time to rather study more. I had a lot of course books to study and there was very little or sometimes no time left to read other books.
Books in my young adult life
I entered my Bachelor University and was more than surprised to have a library hour during the week. The same old childhood memories popped up and I was thrilled to be sitting in the library again to just read books. I found some very interesting life changing magazines there. I again started with my reading routines, and it felt just so good. The mega book exhibition happened every year in my city, but I never knew about it during my late school years. I decided to visit the exhibition that very year and I also collected some books from the exhibition and the inner child in me was just enthralled.
I decided to keep this habit of book reading alive, but I entered the world of corporates for my first job and then the second job and somehow the life was so taxing that there was hardly any time or energy to read books. I found difficult to find a balance between my work and life; let alone the time for books. I even feared I might lose my love for books for not having read them for so long. Just then came a surprise in my life. I decided to learn German language for various reasons and the Goethe Institute in my city had a beautiful library.
My joys found no bound. I started exploring the mini comics and mini thriller series in the library for my language level. These books in a foreign language brought the memories of “Tinkle” and “Champak” in me. I have some very beautiful memories of my dad buying me Tinkle books from the Railways station book stalls. I would read the book through out my train journey. Smile and laugh at the jokes written and smell the book as often as possible.
The smell of a new book and also of that in a bookstore is something very close to my heart. I also read a lot of German books over time. Visited other public libraries in the city to find out how different is English literature from the German one. Visiting the public libraries in my city, gave a small feeling of regret, as I couldn’t use them as often as I wished to. The libraries were huge, full of different genres and it felt different to read a book right there in the library.
Books My companion in Germany
Again, life happened, and I ended up getting a little away from books, as I started the next chapter of my life in a new country (Germany) and also enrolled myself for masters. There was so much for me to figure out with the University and the new place with different seasons. I also had to stretch the rope to make the ends meet and so there was a pause from reading.
After a year and half, I visited my parents and a dear family friend, gifted me three books, as my parents had told him how much I love reading books. I took the books and felt a little different this time. A part of me was longing to read them, a part of me even felt bad for being able to read books and a part of me told me, it’s time to resume again. A sense of joy prevailed seeing those books. I returned back to Germany and read the books whenever I found time and I was so happy to be doing it.
Eventually pandemic happened and that meant a lot of books readings happened too. I slowly realized, life would happen every now and then, that shouldn’t stop me from reading books. Now I am mother of a young toddler and yet find time to read a page or two whenever possible. For reading always gave me an immense pleasure. It is something I just can’t put into words. Every book has a style and a feeling which can only be felt when read.
I wish I could create Book FOMOs for people just as these travel bloggers do on social medias. Reading book for me means getting lost in my own imagination and my own world – my wonderland.
About the Author
I am Lalitha, a student here in Germany. My newfound love is writing these days. I love reading books and I am very passionate about cooking and baking. Music and coffee help me navigate tough days. I like hiking and cycling. I live in Aachen and I am truly in love with my life.