Many many moons ago and I do mean many. When I was a child, curling up on the sofa , even the armchair, I was small enough back then, feet tucked under me with a book was my undying bliss. Sometimes I stretched out but mostly I curled up.
In the summer I often climbed a plum tree at the bottom of the garden and curled up with a cushion in the crook of its branches.
Oblivious to extraneous noise or disturbance I would travel anywhere in time and space. Even dragging my book reluctantly to the table (not on Sunday, the Sunday Roast meal was for conversation and discussions with the family.
I wasn’t the odd one out by any means my parents could also, and did, cut themselves of from others when they sank into a book. It was from their nature and nurture I learnt my reading habits. Maybe I was slightly worse, I wasn’t running a home, going out to earn the family crust and school wasn’t anyway important to me after the first two terms. Apart from, of course, their library!
Back then pocket money was minimal and if more funds were needed one had to work for them. So time away from my books was a necessity so that I had enough money to buy some more. Public libraries helped to fill the gap (I was eventually a member of three) the school library had some but I soon read my way through them, and as I got a little older my parents collection, extensive in the extreme helped a great deal. Then there was my own burgeoning collection ripe for re-reads.
It was and still is an addiction hard to control.
Curling up on sofa or plum tree, a nibble or two would go down well. Rich Tea or Digestive biscuits were good, a glass of milk very satisfactory and a couple of times a year when we visited the West End and I was allowed to spend saved up pocket money on it – a Jaffa orange.
I did mention it was many moons ago (back during austerity and rationing.)
An Orange was a treat.
I would cradle it in my hands all the way home. Wait until I had a quiet time (no chores) to read and curl up with my orange, unwrap the purple paper that covered it peel and separate the succulent segments and read. There are orange juice stains still on those children’s books of mine.