Anyone who knows me well is aware that my bibliophilia verges on being a mental illness, so I couldn’t let World Book Day 2016 pass without a quick post.
To my eternal regret, WBD (does that acronym exist? It does now) wasn’t around until the tail-end of my school career and certainly didn’t generate the same level of frenzy amongst the nation’s pre-teens as it does these days. It’s my own fault for being born so long ago I guess, but the good news is that I have two little girls to celebrate it with.
I love the fact that the world now has a day to celebrate books and reading. As PR stunts go, its one of the best for one of the worthiest causes in my opinion. As you can see on my Instagram feed (and hence the hashtag in the title of this post), Lola has already been dressed up to mark the occasion; unprompted, she decided she wanted to be Silky, the fairy from The Magic Faraway Tree, though she never misses an opportunity to don her fairy wings so we probably could have anticipated that one. I suggested Moonface or the Saucepan Man but was met with the derision I deserved.
Mina, being the second child, was an afterthought as usual (only joking, chicky, we love you as much as your sister), which meant that we didn’t have a costume ready for her. Not that she cares. To make amends, I sat her in the middle of a fortress of books:
She was in two minds about whether to go for Ovid’s Metamorphoses or A Tale of Two Cities. The Roman poet won, so we’ll be starting that at bedtime tonight.
I did want to make a couple of serious points in this post as well. Being off work to look after the girls has many benefits, but one of the ones that I was most excited about was that I now have the time to hand down my passions, of which reading and writing are major ones. In the past I’ve done what I can at weekends and in the few minutes I had in the evenings but there’s never enough time and life is hectic. Hopefully over these next few months I will be able to instil a few things of lasting value in both girls, such that as they grow up we will continue to share them. As a parent, that’s got to be the Holy Grail.
The other thing I must say is please open a book with your kids today – either to read to them or have them read to you. Granted, WBD is a wholly artificial construct but we might as well make the most of it. I know Mina for one is looking forward to learning about Diana and Actaeon and the rape of Proserpina later on.