I’ve stumbled across a delightful blog event called Stream of Consciousness Saturdays.  Linda G. Hill hosts this, posting a prompt on Fridays for your Saturday post.

The rules are pretty straightforward:  the post must be stream of consciousness writing with no editing and minimal planning, plus it can be any length or genre.  (You can read the complete list of rules including ping backs and blogger good will here.)

So why, you might be asking, am I posting this on Monday afternoons?  I guess we can sum that one up in a single word.  Life.  Life is pushing this post to Mondays because I know with complete certainty that I won’t reliably publish on Saturday, but since I think it’s a neat writing exercise I totally want to do it anyway.

Call me a rebel.  (Snort.)

I guess this means the following badge will be a permanent reminder of being a day (or two) late and a dollar short…

SoCS badge

The prompt for June 4th is “book.”

It’s a little crazy that book is this week’s SoCS prompt.  I was just telling BrightSide at lunch that my summer goal is to catch up on some reading, and the fact that I even said that sentence aloud speaks volumes about how much my life has changed.

I remember going to the library when I was young – starting in late elementary school, I guess – where my mom and I would spend an hour picking out books.  We’d leave with stacks (stacks!) of them.  She’d have four or five novels, enormously thick books that were mind boggling to a 9 year old.  I’d have eight to ten books of my own, all fiction, from the youth section.  We’d stagger up to the counter and plunk them all down, ready to check out our treasure.

There were few things I loved as much as reading.  Reading by the pool, reading in my bed, taking a book along for any time I got bored, really.  Back in those days I could even read in the car which was a fabulous help for passing seven hour car rides.  The day I realized it was making me nauseated was a sad day indeed…but I digress.

Mom and I would devour books over the summer.  We’d fly through our stacks of reading material, heading back to the library every two weeks or so to gather some more.  Walking into the library was like walking into a candy store – row after row of books to browse, pulling anything that caught my eye, jittery to get home and start a new one.  And I never once lost a library book; it was inconceivable that I might lose track of something so precious.

I carried this habit through my teen years and into adulthood, patronizing libraries in every town I moved to.  There were years when my rate of book consumption slowed, years when my course load was too heavy for pleasure reading or when I was buried in the all-encompassing job of being a new teacher with too much to do and not enough time.  But the summers were always mine.

Walking through those doors into an air conditioned library each June was just…ahhh…like coming home.

While my time available to read might vary, my desire to read does not, so I have a quirky habit of collecting books even when my “to read” stack is already seven or eight books deep.  I’ve got quite a back log right now – everything from youth fiction I’m screening for Bear to books on adoption to (I hate this phrase) self-help books.  I think there are even a few adult fiction books floating around here that have been waiting patiently for my attention.

We’re just a couple of days away from the official start of school vacation so (conceptually) I should be gaining some time here.  Sort of like my own personal Daylight Savings Time.  Now if only I can allot some of that found time to reading.

Maybe we’ll even make a few trips to my old stomping ground.  I hear the library’s got great air conditioning, even when the temps top out in the 90s.