‘Why did you have to say that’, she groaned as she placed the items into the little grocery cart.

‘Reading is fun’, I replied. ‘And good for you. ‘

‘No it isn’t’, she came back. The mere thought of it seemed to have pained her somehow.

The conversation started with her asking if I had any special plans for the upcoming weekend. I told her relaxing, which was not exactly the relaxing that some people might have in mind, and reading. That was definitely something I would do as it is my way to unwind.

I realised my trips to the grocery store for random items have decreased significantly since I have started to use cash instead of relying solely on credit cards. Tonight I had planned to buy one avocado but then noticed that both the Teo and Haagen Dazs ice creams were on sale. Seeing how I had promised the children that we would be buying ice cream for these last five days that they are with me this half of summer, I decided to buy three different kinds.

‘You just have to find the right book’, I continued. And then proceeded to explain that if you were reading a murder mystery book that you couldn’t wait to find out who was the killer. Still, the girl was not impressed. She looked no older than 16. The woman ringing up the items was much older and heard our conversation.

‘Enjoy your murder mystery…or whatever you’re reading’, the older woman wished me as I rolled away the little cart with three containers of ice cream and one avocado. I smiled as I was certain that she agreed with me about the reading.

A good book can transport you to a faraway place providing an escape from the life you lead now. Characters in a book can teach you lessons which might take years for you to learn otherwise. Or they might simply give you a glimpse into the different personalities of humans. Reading expands your mind in a way that no device or social media platform can provide. Somehow, it seems the younger generation has developed a great dislike for the printed medium.

The act of holding a book and flipping the pages with suspense brings with it an excitement that no other form of entertainment can bring. It is an active as opposed to a passive form of entertainment. But you truly need to find the book for you. The sort of story which will keep your interest and not cause your mind to wander but instead will arouse your curiosity.

As you approach the last half of the book you realise that the end is nigh. Perhaps you speed through to the end to see if you were right about story’s direction. Or maybe you’re the kind of person who slows down during the second half of the book as you know that reaching the final chapters will bring about a sort of sadness as you disconnect with the characters.

In addition to being fun and entertaining, reading can be educational. It expands your mind and leads you on a journey to worlds unknown. Places you would like to visit. Topics which enrich our thoughts and lead to more fulfilled lives. The options are endless. We simply need to make time to sit down and embrace those quiet moments alone with a book and let it take us on that distant journey.