In my grandparent’s house in Sri Gading, Batu Pahat, there is a room with one wall packed to the brim from floor to ceiling with books. My mother fondly refers to it as ‘The Happy Library’.
It was of course nothing like the pictures of mansions with a grand library of high ceilings filled with mountains of books. But apparently in those days, their collection was deemed as substantial wealth in books.
It was this third uncle who first started this little project, buying books for his nieces and nephews, encouraging them to read, and getting everyone to chip in their pocket money to contribute to the library fund for more books. His example instilled a lifelong love for books in my mother and all her other siblings.
Whenever I’m back in my grandparent’s house for a visit, I always enjoy a browse through the dusty old shelves that held such treasure beneath their musty exterior.
I find something special, even almost magical, about looking through the yellowed pages of a book from prior generations. And discovering little notes scrawled in the margins of a page is like uncovering a diamond in the rough.
This post is part of my series on Stories of Long Ago