Thursday, 29 March 2012
TALE OF A WELL-TRAVELLED BOOK by Catriona Troth
Years later, the book travelled with my parents to Canada when they emigrated, and lived on the bookshelves in our basement, where I discovered it as a teenager. When Searle died, a few months ago, I found I could recall its yellow dust jacket and bring to mind in almost perfect detail some of my favourite cartoons.
Meanwhile, however, my parents had moved to a smaller place. At some point, no one can quite remember how, they gave the book away and it was passed from hand to hand until it ended up on a charity bookstall at the local farmers' market. There, by sheer coincidence, it was picked up by a friend of my parents who, reading the old inscription from my uncle, guessed to whom it must have belong.
So this spring, I make my first trip to Toronto in a decade, and happen to look up this friend of my parents, of whom I had been very fond. She tells me, "You'll never guess what I picked up at the Farmers' Market a few months ago." And I tell her, "I can't believe it - I've been thinking about that book."
And so now the book I loved so much as a child is back in my hands again, just as if the god of lost books had been keeping track of it all along.
Posted by Words with JAM