"It is clear that the books owned the shop rather than the other way round. Everywhere they had run wild and taken possession of their habitat, breeding and multiplying, and clearly lacking any strong hand to keep them down." ~ Agatha Christie, The Clocks.
My library is small compared to some, but when you have to move all your books, it might as well be the Central Lending Library. The house has been overrun with men this week; men banging, hammering, drilling, painting, plastering and causing general chaos. All the furniture was moved until D and I were squeezed into a tiny space that was left while they got on with whatever it was they were doing. Thousands of cups of coffee were made and pints of milk disappeared at an alarming rate. But best to get it all over in one hit, then we can begin to put everything to rights. There is not one thing in our house that is in the right place.
Which brings me to the point of this post. Books. We had to clear them all from the shelves whilst the room was painted. Piles of them towering, threatening to topple if we breathed too heavily when near them. And as I was moving them all back I couldn't resist opening them one by one, remembering when they had been read, and what had inspired me to keep them. This made the job a lot longer than it should have been; but seeing them all laid out on the bed whilst I was sorting I came to the realisation that they were my history, that all my likes and interests were there; the things that made me, me.
Books on gardening; writing; poetry, wildflowers; nature, novels; vintage; classics; philosophy etc. Do I really need to keep so many - the answer is yes. I draw inspiration from my books, read them over and over - they are part of me - books that have been collected since I was a child.
They hold so many memories - have kept me entertained for hours - have taken me to places I could only dream of - filled my imagination with wondrous things. Yes, it is a pain when you have to move them, sort them all out and return them to the shelves - it took about five hours, give or take - but the shelves looked so lonely without them and I am glad they are back where they belong.