When I was a little girl, I had a secret reading spot.
We had an attic that you could reach via a wooden ladder that was hidden behind a ceiling panel. In my eyes, that little rope on the ceiling was the gateway to my reader’s heart.
The roof was slanted, and on the sides, my mom had made curtains to hide all sorts of occasional use stuff. One of the things hiding behind those curtains was a stack of mattresses.
And I loved to sneak up the ladder with a book and a flashlight, pull the ladder up again, and lie down on those mattresses to read.
Sometimes for hours.
I was so gleeful when my mom called me down for dinner and then couldn’t find me. Or maybe she did, and she allowed me my secret hiding place.
Sometimes I lay there, quiet as a mouse, listening to my dad and my brothers working with the tools that took up part of the attic.
They had a language of their own, very concise, always discussing their crafts, things I had no idea about, like woodworking.
I really miss my secret reading spot at times, but there is one thing from that spot that I’ve carried with me throughout my life: my love for reading.
Books are the first I turn to when I want to learn something or dive deep into a subject.
Books are such a comfort, magnificent tools for learning, a joy to discover.
Bookstores are always on my list of things to visit when I travel. Even if I can’t read the language, I visit, just to drink in the atmosphere.
I daydream of favourite bookstores in cities I can’t travel to now, of a secondhand shop I yearn to go to again when the whole virus thing is a bad dream.
Until that time arrives, I still have enough books to keep me entertained.
I will never tire of the simple joys of curling up in bed reading a book.
The joy I feel when I read is impossible to describe.
So I won’t even try.