A self-confessed bibliophile, I am a literature fanatic by education and a fashion designer by profession.
My love for books began at the age of 11, when my mother rented the first ever novel of my life, Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone. In those days, renting books/magazines was a trend since buying one was expensive and frankly speaking, unheard of in middle class business families. Renting was much cheaper (it cost us Rs.5/week, I remember because I used to go along to pick out books and magazines for my mum and sometimes a comic for myself and my sister) and it didn’t ask for space in the long run. Coming back, she had actually got the book for herself, so it was in Hindi, but it was me who got enchanted and read it in flat 3 days. Not wanting to boast, but a novel to be completed in such a short span for a child who never before in life had seen, let alone read a novel by a foreign author, was a great feat and it enthused me to explore further. My journey with my love, thus begun and I have never looked back.
I acquired a penchant for foreign authors, scouring my way through them greedily and before I knew, I was an addict. God knows how many books I have read in my greed, which I don’t even remember. The school library had class-wise sections, from which we could borrow books, but it never interested me since I had already begun reading books that were supposedly past my age. Then the book renting shop came to my rescue. I would force my mum to rent novels for me every week which devoid her of the magazines she wanted instead. But being a mother, she wanted to give all that I wanted and never complained. When this shop too couldn’t continue to fulfill my appetite, I turned to the annual book fairs. And boy, I was overwhelmed! Unfathomable number of books, everywhere my eyes could see. All year, I would save my pocket money to spend it all on these fairs. I didn’t mind carrying 15-20 books all by myself when I knew the joy I was to receive in the end. Every year I would visit the fair and relish the books I bought. Eventually my collection became too much and the lack of space forced me to take a sabbatical.
During my self-imposed sabbatical, life happened, higher studies, job and the highlight, my marriage. Since it is an arranged one, talking is all we did, and during one such late-night conversation, my then fiancé and now husband got to know about my first love and the break up. It so happened that before our wedding date my birthday arrived, and to my surprise I received something from him that made me realize that my decision of marrying him is right. He gifted me my Kindle saying that he wanted me to continue my love affair with books and re-kindle the romance that I had so brutally murdered.