As I pack up the things in my home, making the gradual move from old house to new, I am learning that I am a collector. You may remember my realization that Jon and I are collectors of chairs a while back. But other than that, I thought my collecting days had ended long ago with Smurfs and unicorns. Not so, it seems… I also collect books. And recipes (oddly enough – more on that later).
Yesterday, I packed up five boxes of books from one bookcase. Pulling the books off the shelves, I was easily distracted as various books beckoned me to peruse their pages… marine biology from my college days, my journal from days spent in the village of Visomboh in Cameroon, a book about the Biltmore Estate, “Visioneering” by one of the Stanleys. Other books I did not take time to open, but were packed with care and fondness… children’s books given to me as a child, books in French, works of fiction from “Where the Red Fern Grows” and other classics to “The Summerhouse” which I literally found somewhere but it turned out to be a fun read, books on Christian living/apologetics/doctrine, books on sociology and anthropology. So many interesting books! And so little time to read – it’s tragic (almost)! Some of the books I have, I have not even read.
I love bookstores and libraries… so many fascinating subjects and ideas and thoughts out there. I worked in the Science and Engineering Library my fourth year in college, and it was a great job. Besides the fact that I could get some studying done and meet interesting people, I got to deal with all these books, many regarding topics I didn’t even know existed. One day I would like to have a library in my home – a whole room devoted to books, with big old wooden chairs and table to sit at (just like in the old library in Clark Hall).
One book I want to track down is “Mr. Pine’s Purple House.” It was one of my favorites as a suburban kid in New Jersey. It’s about this guy, Mr. Pine, who lives in a neighborhood where all the houses are the same. But he is unique and paints his house purple to express his individuality, but I think everyone ends up copying him and painting their houses purple, too. I’ve thought about Mr. Pine recently while painting the interior of our new house – our “house of many colors.” I’ve never lived in a house that had much color on the walls, but I’ve just about chosen a different color for every room in this new house, though I think it flows rather nicely still. Maybe it’s my artistic side coming out. Anyway, I’ve been meaning to get that book…