Thursday, November 29, 2012

Booking Through Thursday

Today's question is really three --can you imagine yourself NOT being a reader?  How does it shape your life?  Your perception of it?

The answer to the first question is easy. In a word, no.  When I was small, before I could read, I was fascinated watching my mother read.  When I learned to read, it was my favorite pastime.  I loved to go to the local library, especially in the winter, grab a few books and go home and read.  Of course, there was not much television -- we only had three channels -- no internet  or social media so books were my way to explore the world.  Some of my favorite books were about children in other countries and other cultures.  I managed to work my way through most of our required reading lists all through elementary school.  As I grew, my taste in reading changed and I had to have my share of things like "Gidget" and any number of other romantic sorts of things but even those were "educational" in a sense.  We were required to read for school in addition to our regular texts and I enjoyed it.  After I got out of school, I continued to read for pleasure and, in fact, found my daughter' s name in a book.  There has never been a book far from my hand, or my purse.

How does it shape my life?  Well, I am a strong believer that "knowledge is power" and where better to attain knowledge than from books.  It doesn't matter if you are in a directed classroom or doing independent learning -- if you have a book and the desire to learn something then you can do anything. I also use reading as a stress reliever.  I find nothing more relaxing than sitting down with a good book, a cookie and a cuppa, allowing myself to be transported to wherever the book is set and just get lost.  I find that an hour with a good book is probably as good as any drug.

How does reading shape my perception of life?  In the first place, when I read, I not only see the world as being wide open to me, I realize how small I am and how much there is out there for me to learn.  I also realize, when reading historical things, how far our society has come and how our life is so different than it was  when this country was founded and even beyond that.   The one genre that has made this possible more than any other is blog reading.  I find it fascinating that I can log on to the computer and read blogs from all over the world written by women of all ages and learn their concerns, their likes, their dislikes and what they do.  I find they aren't so different from me.

I feel like my world would be quite narrow if I didn't read -- regardless of what I read or how I get the information.  I can't imagine being in that situation.