Sweatshirt – Urban Outfitters | Pants – Urban Outfitters | Hat – Kauf Dich Glücklich | Coat – Forever 21 | Shoes – Vans
This February I finally got around to doing something I haven’t done in forever. Read a mother fucking book. It’s not that I don’t reading – I read all the time: articles on websites, magazines, blogs. I just never seem to have the time or patience to sit down and read an actual book from start to finish. Which is kind of disheartening seeing as I was an avid reader as a kid. You know, the kind of kid who owned a flashlight for the sole purpose of borrowing herself under the blankets with a book as to not get caught and told off for not being a sleep way past her bed time. I also used to think that a measure of an interesting and intelligent person was if they took pleasure in reading.
But in our modern age, it just seems like there are too many damned things to do each day and setting aside time for reading a book feels like time that could be better spent getting shit done. And yet, I am sure if I spent half as much of my time actually doing work rather than scrolling mindlessly through my Facebook feed, or compulsively scrolling through instagram, liking and commenting things in a frenzied state (is it just me, or does it always feel like you could be doing more social media work on instagram?), I might just have that time for reading.
I am pretty sure that my recently developed aversion to reading books also has a lot to do with the fact that as of late, everything I have tried to read has been on my kindle. Now, I am all for convenient technology, but my heat belongs to all things “analogue”. While it’s downright magical that a paper-thin device can hold hundreds of books digitally, I feel a lack of orientation – for me it’s important to be able to physically see and touch the progress I am making when reading. Nothing beats turning real pages either. Especially if you are like me and like to flip back and forth frequently to re-read bits, like characters’ names.
In any case, one day while looking at what iTunes had to offer in the form of new releases, I was reminded of the fact that I really wanted to read “The Girl on the Train” before watching the film. After a few failed attempts to find the book – spontaneously finding books in English no matter how popular they are can be quite the feat in Berlin – I finally made the paperback purchase at my local favourite english bookstore/cafe in Fhain (seriously unsure why I didn’t try there first…) on a day where I my phone was dead and I wanted to eat a bagel alone in piece but still not be stuck staring at a wall in boredom.
I started reading in the cafe, took the book home with me, and proceeded to read until my boyfriend came home, and went back to reading on the sofa well after he was sleeping until around 4 am. Needless to say, I enjoyed the book. (If you have been living under a popular-literature rock for months like I have been, check out my review of the book here) It’s not ground-breaking literature, but it’s a fast-paced read both in content and literal time investment.
All in all, this is to say that despite not having any groundbreaking revelations about life here, it was a nice feeling to remember how good it feels to curl up on the sofa with a good read. While I no longer believe that intellect is based on one’s proclivity towards belletristic, it feels good to get swept up into another world created by the pages in a book apart from the digital world. So much of my day is consumed by being connected and online that it’s nice to escape for a few hours and dive head first into written words on a page and not a screen.
And despite the dominant trend of minimalism and my interest in being eco-friendly, buying a good paperback book is something I never really feel guilty about. Which is why my goal is to do more of it. I’ve heard great things about “The Luminaries” and I can see it’s paperback spine from my seat in S&S. I’m pretty confident that when I leave here, I will be walking away a few Euros poorer but with a new adventure in hand.
Photography: Victoria Reinsch
Post-Processing: Rae Tashman