I just love reading. I’m grateful that I learned to read when I was three, and that I have loved to read ever since I could. I’m grateful for the SRA reading program I still remember from grade school; though I don’t remember much about it except that it was color-coded and I sped through it faster than any other kid in class. Remarkably, after fifty-five years I still remember its initials, though I probably never knew what they stood for until I just looked it up to fact-check myself. I’m grateful for the Bobbsey Twins and The Borrowers, for L. Frank Baum and all the Oz books, for Narnia; for Charles Dickens and The Three Musketeers and Anna Karenina, and for goddammit Thomas Hardy: I threw The Mayor of Casterbridge across the living room one time when I was home from college. I’m grateful for One Hundred Years of Solitude. I’m grateful for Toni Morrison and Louise Erdrich and Chinua Achebe and hundreds of other great novelists. I’m grateful for stories and the ability to read them.
“I long ago abandoned myself to a blind lust for the written word.”An Unnecessary Woman ~ Rabih Alameddine
I haven’t been reading as much the past couple of years as I used to all my life, but have found myself in recent months falling back in love with reading and devouring one story after another. I’m grateful for used book stores, library book sales, regular book stores, school book stores, Amazon, paperbacks, hardbacks, holiday book exchanges, mailing books we’ve read back and forth with Chris and sometimes other friends, and for my Kindle paperwhite. I’m grateful that I can check out tangible books from a library ten minutes away, or check out a library e-book online. What a world!
I love reading, especially fiction: I love stories. Loving stories is also why I’m grateful for streaming services and the gazillion options for visual fiction. If I could, I’d do nothing all day but immerse myself in stories. But I can’t so I won’t, and I’ll just be grateful all day every day that I know how to read, and have access to way more stories today than the most obsessed bibliophile could ever read in a dozen lifetimes. So many books, so little time.