Art of Books – Start Them Young

BL S & IMy kids and I have just visited the British Library for the very first time. Loooved it! Would you agree that there’s beauty in being surrounded by books, books, and… you guessed it… more books?

I was amazed by the King’s Library and the ancient historical treasure Codex Sinaiticus (Sinai Bible) displayed in one of BL’s exhibitions. Reportedly, the latter was produced in the middle of the 4th century and it is the earliest complete manuscript of the New Testament plus the best witness for some books of the Old. Usually, members of the public aren’t allowed to take pictures of it, but if you ask it will be given as the book says… So, I asked and received the permission to take one shot. Thank you, kind BL person! 🙏 Please check it out in My Instagram Highlights “Art of the Book”, if interested. 📸 I was told that people come from all over the world to see the Codex as well as Magna Carta which is another significant part of the same exhibition…

When gazing at the tall glass tower of the King’s Library, my daughter (photographing Anne Frank’s sculpture in the pic above) sighed loudly with her arms wide open as if trying to embrace the volumes. This rather theatrical scene caught the eye of a passer-by stranger who then smiled at me briefly amused by her “ode to the books lookalike”.

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  • “Amazing, isn’t it?” I said acknowledging the book tower.
  • “Yes, it is” he answered.

That was it! He went on his way and so did we… No one said a word about my book–aficionado’s symbolic, although exaggerated, gesture. Yet, it brought about a brief, memorable moment of connection between us book lovers. 😂 Soon after, another passer-by glanced at my kids aged 6 – 12, smiled at me and said: “It’s good to start them young”.

  • “That is so true.” I replied.

And then, my son dropped a bombshell (in my mind) saying that the library was a great place to hang out… ‘What?!’  the fun-police in me reacted on the inside, ‘we’re here to LEARN – not hang out! You’re here to expand your minds, blah, blah, blaaaaah…’ ‍Thank God, after my brief internal turmoil, it clicked… He just needs to fall in love with the atmosphere… Of course, I want my children to see the library as a great hang out spot (sort of).

It was wonderful to explore knowledge with themphysical books, books on the screen, history, a little bit of art and music from Chopin to strangely sounding noises which resembled mating birds more than anything else. For a few hours, we have walked up and down the national library. By the end of the day, they were gloriously exhausted (no bedtime drama) and enriched at the same time… It was good for mama too.

So, stay calm and keep on turning one another into a book lover… If you’re a parent do start them young. 🤸‍♂️🤹‍♂️🤸‍♀️

And, if you’re into poetry and/or books about relationships please check out my Poetry Collection “Love, Don’t Fear.

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“Size 0 Town”

diet photoHer name was Naomi. She lived in a town. Since the day that she was born, her mum thought she was too big; and she put her on a diet – forbade her to eat. She lost a few pounds, but still was quite chubby. This mum never gave up though – the goal was her daughter’s “beauty”.

Naomi grew up – beautiful and bright, although quite self – conscious and a little shy… She did well at school, though she barely learned; spent most time at home, without any friend. The reason Naomi has become so sad was because she always believed she was fat. Whenever she tried to relax a bit her mum would remind her: “You’re not perfect yet”. She told her to cover her face with a fringe because of tall forehead and face rather big.

In her teenage years she was very pretty, although quite unhappy, wishing she was skinny. All she thought about was her massive chest; as she counted calories she hated herself. Finally, Naomi addicted to food let the constant cycle affect her good mood. Overeat and vomit, fasting and the rest made her lose control and very depressed. Her weight fluctuated, which has made her ill. She became obese, but this time for real.

Naomi was 19 as she left her town. She moved to a city with fearful delight. By the time she started her fresh and new life she was very shy still, which did make it hard. She kept meeting people though and convinced her mind that she should be happy whatever the size. Diets were the lifestyle still, every now and then. She kept losing weight just to gain it back. She wanted to stop, but didn’t know how. Magazines and TV did not help her out. Summer holidays, she travelled abroad and loved what she saw and she saw a lot. Different shapes on different people who seemed loud & proud about slightly bigger sizes and a thicker thigh. Naomi decided she could not go back, and made up her mind to stay where she’s at.

Now, she was quite far, in this distant place – far away from mum obsessed with the scales. She thought that was it. She could now start living, but all she could think of was how much she’s eating. She didn’t know why, though she ran so fast, the size 0 town kept haunting her down. She let opportunities always pass her by. She spoke to herself “You’re not slim enough”. She kept getting older and had many fears, she was always worried and often in tears.

And then, she fell pregnant with a baby girl. That was the red light she needed – it was time to change. She did really well till a certain time – her mum came to visit from size 0 town. Her mum fell in love with the little one, but kept on repeating that she was too fat. Naomi was angry with comments mum made.  She didn’t want her child to go through the same.

  • Mum, please change the topic, this one we’ve been through. Let’s talk about you. What do you want to do?
  • Let’s meet with your friend – that slim girl and tall, always in good shape, always in control. Is she still a model? Do you keep in touch? I hope she is well… So what would you say? … Oh, yes I remember (sigh). The girl’s name was Asia!
  • No mum, she’s not well at all – died from anorexia!

Naomi decided she would not be angry. She still wanted though to protect her baby – from size 0 madness and size 0 town that so seriously affected her mum. She made up her mind not to let the size rule over her own, or her daughter’s life.