Like last week, I’m going to try to describe something that doesn’t need describing if you understand it – and probably can’t be described if you don’t.
I’ve been reading for pretty much 27 years straight. I guess that’s probably more than I’ve done anything else in my life except breathe and sleep.
Sometimes it’s just a pastime. I flip. I’ll read magazines back to front. I peruse. I’ll read a few chapters till I get sleepy. Like that.
But every now and then it’s not like that. It’s a drug or a love or an obsession. Or maybe it’s just getting stuck. I get locked in and I don’t want to do anything else – or really, I can’t do anything else. I don’t hear what’s going on, and I don’t get sleepy, and I don’t realize that I’m moving my eyes or that I’m turning pages or even that I’m there in any bodily sense.
Rarely, I’ll I smile. More rarely, get excited. Rarest of all, get teary. Mostly I suppose I don’t do anything at all. I have no idea. I sort of forget I’m there.
And then when it’s over and I have to come out of it, I’m not quite right. I walk around sort of dazed. Everything is too much and I don’t want to be around anybody. It’s all too loud and too strong. I guess it probably feels like a hangover.
It’s like coming home from a trip where you did a lot, but not much happened while you were gone. The sameness of everything is too jarring and you just want to get back because you’re not ready to be here again yet.
Maria told me I’d love The Time Traveler’s Wife and I doubted her because I am snobby and elitist and skeptical of Book Club Books and Airport Bookstore Books. But she was so right and it was perfect and I can’t wait to read it again. And of course she was right because she’s got perfect taste and she’s known me for almost 20 years. But she was extra special right this time.