I had never really liked to read as a kid. The thought of sitting still long enough to get more than just a few words out was a little absurd to me, it just wasn’t my thing. In fact, that is exactly what they used to ‘punish’ me with as a child, “Sit still in this chair for 15 minutes.” That was murder on me and that was the way my life went for 30+ years – never sitting still long enough to take a breath. Then one day, while I was working as a laborer for the railroad, something snapped in my back and my life began to slooooow down. Because I could not go very far without being in pain, I started reading computer application books and eventually landed on “reading for fun” and that brought me to my Western Books that I read today.
Oh sure, my Dad would read me a story or two when I was a kid but it was never really much and I was older by that time, ya see, my Mom and Dad were gone a lot when I was a kid and it left me alone with my Grandmother to take care of me. To get me into bed at night she would get a small book for me to read and leave a small treat for me on my pillow. It would keep me in bed long enough to get me to sleep and not cause trouble. The problem with this was I had trained myself that every time I brought a book out it was nap time. I had to force myself through if I was going to go on farther than the little “Golden Books” at the local Library as an adult.
Which brings us to today. I am a full-grown man with what I would consider a respective collection in our home library but if you ask my wife, she would say that we have the equivalent of a local “Half Price Books” growing in our basement.
Now, enter my Granddaughter, she has just turned three and loves to do whatever I am doing. Since she was VERY young, I have been reading her stories. We have done everything from Mickey Mouse, to stories from Falendor (a product of my own creation), to books that I have loved since I was a child.
It never ceases to amaze me that given enough time of me just sitting there reading something … anything, that she will just climb up in my lap and ask me to “tell her” what I am looking at and then we are off into another chapter or two and if it goes for TOO long it usually winds up with one or both of us in a nap! Such a life!
I have been reading just about everything I could to her since she was very young, I have even been known to do a character voice or two to which, nowadays I get a giggly imitation of what I just read or a soft, “Do it again Bumpa.”
I even know when I have told a story well enough because when I put her down she will “snatch” up the book, sit down in her OWN chair and retell the story again and again and then I hear, “Right Bumpa?”
She is now three years old and tells Bumpa all about her day and what she is GOING to do and sometimes it is even understandable to hear. But, she is NEVER too big to climb up into the Old Man’s lap and listen to a story or two.
I suppose if this is what she is to remember me by, so be it. Exposing someone else to new worlds and ideas is kind of an honor and if she remembers NOTHING else it will be that I put down the pen, paper and computer to share a few moments with her.
And THAT’S how I TURN IT AROUND!
Go and win your day!