Sunday, March 13, 2011

Sunday Salon: Packing Books

I'm leaving tomorrow on a two-week vacation, and I haven't packed a single thing.  All I can think about (apart from earthquakes and tsunamis) is books.  I'm sure you're floored at the thought...(as if this isn't a common bibliovore conundrum).  Part of this, of course, is a matter of not wanting to be without reading material.  But that's not the whole issue--after all, there are book stores all over, never mind at the tip of my fingers when my Kindle is in hand.  Regardless of where I am, books are accessible.

There is mood to consider, which is affected by quantity and quality of reading time.  What will I be wanting to read?  How much will I able to focus?  For any serious reader, there is also the consideration of goals, deadlines, and TBR lists.  If I'm going to read, I usually want to read something that is already on my mind, on my radar, on my nightstand, or on my list.

But books are more than a goal to me.  They are more than a story, more than the sum of their parts.  They are representative of family and home, adventure and creativity--all that is right in the world, even if it is shown by illuminating that which is dreadfully wrong.  Books are a declaration of life, an insistence that people matter, a celebration of the imagination.  They are symbol showing that even when all else fails, we have the ability to make a difference, to create hope where none existed.

That is the bigger reason why I keep stacks of books around me, why I carry them wherever I go.  Entertainment? Certainly.  But also a reminder that within our many differences lies a common ground.  Inside each book is a chance to see the world through someone else's eyes, to see something new or remember something old.  In some sense, these keep me tied to family that isn't nearby, they help me think and grow.

I'm sure I'll bring many more books than I'll be able to get through (I always do) but I don't mind.  I prefer it that way.  There is always another dream to dream, always another book to read.  Adventure lies just around the corner.


  1. I appreciate your thoughts. A lovely post this is. You pretty much sum it up for me. Have a wonderful time and bring back all your lovely adventures to share with your blog friends.

  2. One of my favorite parts of planning a vacation is planning what books to take along. In fact, that's what my Sunday Salon is about, too.

    Here is my Sunday Salon post:
    Do you have any recommendations for good books about New York City?

  3. Thanks, Belle--I'm excited, there will be pictures and stories for sure. :)

    Deb, I told my husband I was going to fill my suitcase with books and put my clothes in my carry-on. He laughed. Sounded like a good idea to me...?

  4. Enjoy your vacation... I always bring too many books, too :-)

  5. I too have been known to overpack...with books, magazines, etc. and then bring home more than I brought with me even if I didn't read what I brought :)

    Hope you have a wonderful trip!!

  6. Oh yes, must leave room to bring more books back with me!!

  7. I am SO with you. You need to have an array of things to read. What if you ran out of books but didn't want to spend your precious touring time scouring the bookstore for the exact right next read? I always feel that way. Thank goodness for e-readers. Do they work abroad? I've been wondering that for myself, but haven't looked into it. What did you end up bringing?

    Have FUN!!!

  8. Melody, hope you enjoy your vacation. On Sunday, I'm off for 10 days, and my biggest packing concern is how many books will I be able to take with me, what should they be, and what happens if I run out. Of course, you're right, you can always buy books. But it's so hard to predict what you'll be in the mood for and there's nothing worse than finding you used precious suitcase space for a book that you're not really interested in. Alas.

  9. I hope you are having a great time in Ireland!


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