I don’t remember the exact day we first met but I do know you were introduced to me early in life by my parents and grandparents. The very first vivid memory I have of you is around the age of 5 when I met you in the form of Enid Blyton’s ‘Stories for you‘. I got lost in your world listening to the different stories you had to tell me. And I was hooked.
As the years went on, you were all I asked for. Every birthday gift or reward for doing well academically had me requesting some form of you. Usually by Enid Blyton. But later Nancy Drews and Little Women. I still remember how from my 11th birthday, my favourite uncle would ask me for a list of you and would get all the 6 on the list. I could get lost for hours on my birthday into the world of St. Clare’s with Pat and Isabel, or Malory Towers with Darrell and the gang or solving mysteries with Fatty and the five find-outers. Oh the fun we had!
I used you as an inspiration in my games and to motivate me to study. I would pretend to be part of Malory Towers attending boarding school and studying with a bunch of other girls and boys. More importantly, as I entered my teenage years and struggled with some personal problems like most teenagers, I headed to you, my friend. That’s because you were the one who could take me away from the harsh reality of life into wonderful worlds of wizards, witches, fairies and mysteries. A world which none could surpass. Through you, I created worlds of my own that helped cope with some of the curve balls that life would throw at me along the way.
As I grew older, my tastes changed with maturity and I began to spend time with you in the form of Sidney Sheldons and John Grishams. Then came a two year hiatus. Ironically enough, when I was studying English Literature during my first and second years of undergrad. I apologise my dear friend, but the pressures of reading books for exams got in the way. I did not enjoy Oliver Twist or Mill on the Floss and yearned for the days when I could sit with you and finish you in an hour. Fortunately, you saved me in my third year in the form of J. K. Rowling by bringing Harry Potter and his amazingly wonderful world of Hogwarts into my life. And I’ve never looked back since.
I now spend time with you in various forms. Reading you while sobbing to my heart’s content thanks to Jodi Picoult or Favel Parrett. Or being enthralled by a mystery. Or just swept away by an amazing piece of writing by Rohinton Mistry or Lionel Shriver. I always have you with me in my bag or on my bedside. I cannot go anywhere without you. Yes, I am dependent on you. You help me when I feel like shit. You are there for me even when I’m happy. You let me explore worlds without having to pay much money. And best of all, you let me live a number of lives.
Just yesterday, someone I met had a smile on their face when I described you with passion that none could surpass. Talking to them about walking into a store with millions of you was something they did not completely get. But despite not knowing me all that well, could see my love for you.
I’m almost 30 and have enjoyed the last 25-odd years with you. I sincerely hope to spend many, many more. Hopefully, till I take my last breath on this planet. Thank you for always being there for me.
Ernest Hemingway said it best:
Lots of love,
***Inspired by The Write Tribe Prompt***
Until next time,