“We read to know that we are not alone.” -C.S. Lewis
I remember how lonely I was when I first moved to New York by myself. I was never one to move or stay somewhere just because I had a friend in that location. I know that sounds counter intuitive, but I always thought I would challenge myself to dive into the unknown alone, and friends would naturally follow. I cheated myself out of many possible good times by that self-induced edict but hindsight is always 20/20.
While I was settling in to my first apartment about 30 minutes outside of New York City, I enjoyed traveling here or there on weekends to visit any number of friends across the country. I also enjoyed every second that I explored so many inches of NYC by myself. But the weeknights or weekends I did not travel were eerily quiet. I needed something to quiet my fears and quench my mind.
My favorite trip outside of that apartment was going to the local Barnes & Noble Bookstore. It was as if when I opened those doors all the knowledge in the entire universe was right in front of me for the taking. It wasn’t like in college where the professor chose the books for me to read. I could read about anything and everything I wanted to know about. An education of my own design was imminent and I was voracious in sucking out the marrow.
Those books, those characters and all the knowledge that came with them were my friends during a time when I needed them most. They have shaped me into the person I am today and I am forever grateful. I can only hope to give those larger than life connections to anyone who reads this blog.
Which books have been your best friends?