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Thanks to Priyanka Pimpale for this post!!
“Here’s to Books – The CHEAPEST vacation, money can buy.”
Charlaine Harris got it perfectly right! Every reader worth their salt agrees with this statement. When you are truly immersed in a book, you emote with the characters. Reading a book is a mini-getaway, a retreat to wherever the author takes us. In such times, if someone or something were to disturb you, only a fellow reader would understand why you’d want to exact murderous revenge. Ergo, everyone has a comfort place where they are oblivious of everything else, but the book. A place where they can go and no one will disturb them. It’s an alcove, a sanctum where they can be themselves. Your most popular choice might be ‘that comfy sofa, with the erstwhile hot chocolate stain from uninterrupted reading sessions over the years’ but for many other readers, this “holy” place is as wacky as comfortable. It could be a bathtub or the roof, there are a myriad of possibilities. As they say – to each his own.
1. Behind the textbook during an on-going lecture
Picture this: The professor has just launched into Newton’s Laws of Motions with renewed vigour and you can only think of how the ‘saviour quartet’ siblings will save Narnia from the impending doom of the Ice Queen. Oh, the agony! What do you do? You carefully extract the novel from your bag and place it strategically behind your textbook. The teacher thinks that you are intently studying Newton, but really, you are light years away from this insipid class, in Narnia! Everybody wins!
2. In the bathtub or on the pot
It’s been such a long day! And everything seems to get to you, it seems like the universe has planned your downfall today! What do you do? Draw a hot bubbly bath, pick that book you’ve wanted to read, since forever, and read your troubles away (at least temporarily!). The bathtub – where the hot water calms your frayed nerves and the bubbles make you dream in reality – is a god send place to read a book or two, or three. 😀
Another popular place is the pot. (You giggled, right? I did too.) The doughty reader, determined to not let anyone get in his way of completing the last two chapters of ‘THE BEST book ever’ (note: all books we read are THE BEST books ever) locks himself in, huddles on to the pot and merrily reads away. It’s the best place because, hey, who is going to disturb you in the washroom? (They don’t need to know the truth about what you are doing! *wicked grin*)
3. In a bookstore
You have been lurking about in the shadows of the book store for two hours now. Only one more page and you promise yourself that you’ll leave. The store manager walks by with a condescending glare. The store clerk looks at you with impatient eyes wondering when you will be out of his way. The store manager recognizes people of your ilk when he sees them. You claim your seat in one of the corner aisles of the bookstore. You pick one of the top selling novels and read from the first chapter or browse through the enormous selection of coffee table books. You have the perfect room temperature, the best seat and you’re surrounded by books. Nothing tops this reading ambiance, except maybe, a library.
Reading a popular book on-sale in a bookstore gives book nerds like us an adrenaline rush. We feel like spies in stealth mode, our aim – reading through the pages as fast as light and completing as many chapters of the new book as possible.
The necessity of getting from one place to another requires us to use different modes of travel. Unfortunately, teleportation still doesn’t exist in our world (Sigh!). But the banality of commuting to work every day and wading through a sea of human population to get to your destination is warded off by books! Read them in a boring flight or being wedged between talkative teenagers in the train or after finally catching a seat on the bus! It takes you away from grim reality! And if the thought of carrying the book worries your back, what are e-book readers for? Technology finally has something for us too 😀
5. On a tree or in a park during summertime.
Take a book, lie down on the soothing green grass and read away. Sit on a bench, and concentrate on your protagonist’s adventures. There is no chance of anyone disturbing you. Except, pesky kids playing in the park. And their pets. And, if you need to get away from that menacing dog, perch yourself atop a wide branch of a tree and read. Or do it because you want to. Very few things are cooler than reading a book on a tree. Take a picnic basket, stuffed with yummy food and make a day of it! Nothing would seem as perfect.
6. Beach Reads
A book is like a mini-vacation. And what’s better than a mini-vacation, you ask? A real vacation! Go to the beach, look at the sea and contemplate on what came first, the chicken or the egg? And if worrying about the beginning of the world is too stressful, take a book along! Beach reads are a popular category of books. You read the book, look up at the sea dreamily, you read again. You swing away on your hammock, wait for the hero in the book to kiss the heroine and live happily ever after. Then you sleep, with a satisfied smile on your face. Oblivion, ain’t it?
It’s been a long hard day. And the climax of the story is finally going to unravel in this chapter. You lock yourself in your room and frantically turn the pages, and you hear your name being called out. Your siblings want you to come and help them out. After grudgingly helping them and a few murderous glances, you climb out of the window, slowly onto the roof. Yes, the rooftop! Imagine lying down against the cool roof-tiles and gazing at a starry sky and a rogue cloud, then reading your book. Every time you get tired (this doesn’t apply to veteran readers) you could look at the stars, count a few, and then continue reading. And then there is also the added adrenaline rush! For adventure lovers, combine your hobbies of reading an adventure and hop on to your rooftop.
8. In a boat
In the middle of a lake, surrounded only by ripples of water, stretched across the boat, reading a book. Nothing can disturb you there. Except maybe a shark (Just kidding. Or maybe not.) Reading on a boat is as solitary as it can get. And it is the ultimate tribute to literary hedonism! Plus, rowing is great exercise! So when you are taunted to go and get some “fresh air” you know what to do!
9. While waiting for your turn!
1..2..3..4 hours! That’s how long you have been waiting in line to avail the early bird Super-Shopper discount. And you’re tired and snappy and irritable. You have the necessary food and water supplies. But what about entertainment? You certainly can’t play the Indian national entertainment game – Antakshari! What if someone you know sees you? And you turn to your silent friend, the book, and sooner than you know it, the line is moving. Forgive the girl, who shoved you in to get ahead; she doesn’t have what you do!
10. Under the office table/ study-table.
What is it that we love about being under the table? Is it the feeling of being hidden and/or safely ensconced? Or maybe it’s the thrill of procrastination or defying your superior in his/her ambit! Either way, reading a book under the table (most definitely a wacky place) multiplies the fun of reading it!