Given yesterday's post was so ill-tempered, I am happy that today's post is entirely the opposite. Admittedly, I've decided that problem with my car is that it hates me - I concluded this after it worked fine all day for my husband - but at least it didn't stop me from getting out and about today.
For those not living in sunny Queensland (even though it is currently winter and entirely too cold by my standards), this weekend is the long weekend for the Queen's Birthday and that means one very important thing to me: Lifeline Bookfest.
Every six months the wonderful people at lifeline gather all of the books they have been donated, book out the convention centre at dazzle the book loving world with literally thousands upon thousands of books. Rows and rows, table upon table, of beautiful, and very cheap, books. All proceeds, of course, go to charity.
I arrived just after opening, in my now apparently-working-perfectly car. Within minutes I am striding into the first hall, passing the registers, and staring out across a vast sea of books. Just the smell, of that many books in that immense hall, is dizzying.
Of course I am straight to the sci/fi and fantasy table. Mostly because these books go reasonably fast, and I'm getting pickier in my choosing as I already have a large number of the books on offer. I remember that I picked up and re-bought the same book at three separate bookfests. I hated it the first time, re-donated it, bought it again, donated it, and bought it a third time before I finally committed the name to absolute memory so I would never get caught again. I think the person who wrote the blurb for that book deserves a medal, they made it sound magnificent.
After sci/fi, I wonder aimlessly through reference and paperbacks - collecting a few good mysteries and crime stories in the process as well as an old favourite that I had read in high-school but never gotten around to buying. I also ran into quite a few familiar faces and generally had a fun morning socialising while reading the backs of hundreds of books. My hands turned black, I ended up sneezing a lot, my back is killing me from carrying bags of books to the car, and I cannot stop from smiling. I simply love books.
This is a sentiment that is apparently shared. For all that they tell us people don't read anymore, the entire centre was packed with readers, some pushing trolleys, others with suit cases, many with environmentally friendly canvas bags, and all of them packed to the limit and straining under the weight of all the books people were buying. Particularly heartening are the number of young children happily perusing the books and selecting, then waiting outside on the carpet, their latest books opened before them as they check out their purchases.
Definitely a good day today and tomorrow, as I go through my stash of new found books, will also be a very good day.
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