My lease is up. My flight’s booked. The bookshelves are cleared. Big bags of books sit by the door, ready for a charity shop. So what do I do? Walk into a nearby bookshop. Most sections have friends waiting for me so I wander in to see who’s there. I read a bit, but don’t bite. It’s hard not to, but I’ll be back. That’s a promise. It just doesn’t feel right, buying more when I’m on a journey to dispose of their cousins.
In the next few days I’ll pick up some airplane reading – most likely a crime novel or snarky travel book. Probably not one of those classics that I escaped school without ever reading. I remember Mark Twain’s definition of a classic – something everyone talks about but nobody’s read, like the bible or the US Constitution. Anyway, it’ll be a one or two-night book that won’t break my heart if I leave it somewhere. Nothing particularly serious that would require me to work at serious understanding or appreciation. Sounds rather crass and unfeeling when I put it in those terms, doesn’t it?
I’ve got mixed feelings about giving up these books and the ones in Colorado storage. They’ve been good friends, some for just a few months, others for a long, long while. While I still keep and value a lot of what they’ve given me, I’ll have to admit that ignoring them in piles of boxes is rather rude. It’s not their fault. They’ve done nothing wrong. It’s simply me and my changing life. They’ve nourished me, so now it’s time to free them so they can nourish others.
I’ll be back in a few months. After a few more quick reads while I’m on the road I’ll start a new family in my new home.