This should have been a Saturday shenanigans post but I didn’t get to do anything substantial really, just ran a few errands, met my friend Lynette and bought a few things that just happen to make me very happy – books.
I got three books this time – Originals by Adam Grant, and Rumi; A Spiritual Treasury compiled by Juliet Mabey – from what I believe is Nairobi’s best book shop, Bookstop at Yaya Center, and The Alchemist by Paulo Coehlo – second hand from a man selling books on a sidewalk along Moi Avenue.
I’m at a point in my life where I’m continuously craving personal growth on what seems to be, every single minute of the day. I guess I’ve always been this way, just wanting to be better and not knowing how or where to begin chasing these ridiculous dreams like say, traveling the world, becoming a respected artist/ architect, knowing true love et cetera et cetera. And then again realizing that they aren’t as ridiculous as they seem. I guess this is why books have become an escape for me, by reading through other people’s thoughts I get to learn from their stories, and visualize my own dreams (somehow) through their words.
When it comes to films and literature, I seek out material that challenges my wits. In the past few months, I’ve rewatched The Matrix Trilogy, 8 Mile, Frida, and many other films that narrate the stories of people following their dreams or discovering ‘super powers’ just by simply realizing that it all starts from changing your mind set. That we possess immense potential to make our worlds, and even the earth, a better place.
Memoirs have to be my favourite genre of books to read – there is nothing like the rush I get after following an under dog to their success in their own words.
I’ve come across several Paulo Coehlo books before but never really thought to buy them, with the playful covers and not-so-realistic titles like ‘The Devil and Miss Prym’. I had a neighbour called Michelle back at the hostel I’d live in during my campus days, and she had one of his books on her mantel. She said she’d never read it either. I guess the graphic on the cover just never appealed to me and I (ignorantly) dismissed Paulo’s work as fiction, placing it in the same category as the ‘Twilight’ series. I’d read all the books in that series and let’s just say, I got over that vampire love romance phase a few years ago.
In the past three weeks however, I’d keep seeing The Alchemist everywhere I turned. On Instagram, Tumblr and even with second hand book vendors on the street. It’s like the universe was literally shoving it in my face, so I gave in and finally decided to grab a copy. And besides, it was the first time I came across an intriguing Paulo book cover. I highly recommend this book to anyone reading my post right now. It’s a beautiful book, but I rushed through it to get to see how the story ended so I didn’t quite enjoy it as much as I could have.
That’s the thing about life isn’t it? We get something nice and just want to rush through while if we took our time to savour every single moment, we’d have a much wholesome experience instead. Luckily for me, it’s a book that I have by my bedside and I can re-read it over and over again as many times as I like. I finished it in three days (I try to read even a little after work in the evenings and I breezed through this one, couldn’t put it down!).
I’ve known Rumi’s work for years now, but I guess I just wasn’t ready to understand his message. I’d come across deeply profound quotes here and there but it’s recently just began to have a meaning. My friend Magical Rabia wrote this poem for me in my notebook and told me to get some of Rumi’s work, and I’m so glad I did. It’s not the type to be read at one go, at least for me. I think it’s to be read one page at a time, contemplated over an afternoon, and resumed on the next day.
So I guess that leaves me with Originals. I hope I can finish it in a week or two (I’m trying to be generous). Well even if I don’t get to finish it in two weeks, I’ve managed to follow through with my monthly quota of books so yay me!
What are you reading right now? Anything you’d like to recommend? 🙂 ❤