Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Library Checkout

Imagine yourself at a library. You’re walking past the many shelves of books and come to the section of your favourite genre. Your eyes scan the many titles of a various thickness and size, written by thousands of authors. Your index finger brush against the spines of books that sit neatly arranged in rows for its next reader to take home.
You pick the first book out —intrigued by its title— open its cover, flip a few pages, and return it to its place. It wasn't a book you wanted to invest your time in. You move on to the next one that catches your fancy. This one has pages slightly weathered, its cover dented in a couple of pages and some stains that could possibly be coffee. Or brown paint. The bright colour of the cover had taken your attention. You do the same: take it off the shelf, give it a quick glance over, then shaking your head you put it back. This continues on for the next several books.
After what seems like a long time, you’re worn out, feeling hopeless that you’ll never find the book you’re hoping to find amidst the sea of literature. But, you think to yourself, ‘one last try wouldn't hurt.’ You’re desperate but also coming to terms with accepting the fact that maybe it simply isn't fate. You call it bad timing, or bad luck. Maybe someone else had checked out the book you wanted. If the next book that catches your interest turns out to be another flop, you’ll go home.

You try another section, glancing at the titles, feeling the weight of the books in your hands and returning them, feeling more disheartened each time. Then as if by some strange miracle, a particular book, hidden in a place you were sure you had checked, catches your interest. You take it down, feel its cover, read its title and gloss over its summary. Finally feeling intrigued since you first stepped into the library, you sit down on the floor and begin reading the first chapter.
You hadn't realise that two hours have passed. This book had gripped your attention completely! Finally, you've found it. With bubbling excitement, you check-out the book and take it home with you.


You spend every second of your free time flipping through its surprisingly tatty pages (the book appeared new on the outside) hence you were delicate with handling the parchments. No sooner have you gone through halfway when you realise how misleading the book was. The content was different from what you had expected after reading the title. Even the summary hadn't prepared you for this.You put the book down, take a deep breath, and not touch it for a few days.

Days turn to weeks. Soon, it was time to return the book. You locate it, tucked away in a dusty corner of your desk laden with projects and other books you had gotten over the period. You hold the once attention-grabbing literature in your hand, a kind of guilt weighing heavily at the back of your mind for not having finished the book you were once so sure was the one.
You flip through its pages again, a strange familiar feeling brushes against your fingertips as you let the pages fall. You close the book and tuck it under your arm. You couldn't even remember what was it about the book that put you off in the first place. Was it because it hadn't met your expectations, or was it because you had expected too much? You decide that you would give it another chance, and checked out the book again. This time, you would read it the way it should be read.

It's strange isn't it, how relationships work?

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