I find the way humans use language so incredibly amazing and wonderful. The fact that words and symbols take the place of sounds and emotions is daunting if you really think about it. Having a name for something so abstract, or even being able to describe an unnamed entity with a combination of expressive phrases, is just so amazing.
We communicate all of our thoughts and feelings to one another with a range of building blocks that we arrange into larger systems of words and terms and then again into complex sentences and expressions. I fall in love with the English language all over again when I pick up a book and dive deep into my imagination filled with new worlds, interesting people, and strange universes populated with wonder and awe, and thinking back on it, this is probably the reason why I got lost in a labyrinth of weathered book pages at the mall.
It actually happened this past Saturday when my boyfriend and I went walking through the Westfield West Covina mall to kill some extra time before a movie. We were wandering around and minding our own business when all of the sudden my eyes locked on to something so magnificent in the distance. I quickly blinked my widened eye lids to dispel any forms of trickery that could have presented itself as a mirage and swiftly dashed into a treasure trove of books tucked neatly away in a rented store space inside the mall.
I gasped and almost lost my breath when I forgot to breathe as I read the signs that were scattered all over the area on top of white sheets of printed out computer paper. Apparently the temporarily set up book fair that was taking place was giving away all of these wonderful books for only a dollar. I looked at my boyfriend, pointed to the signs, and then left him at the entrance of the book store. I tunneled my way deeper into the row of book cases and happily looked at all of the interesting book titles.
They just about had everything there from the classic tales, to the really great sci-fi and fiction novels, old text books, cook books, spiritual and religious texts, self-help books, literary guides, Goosebumps and other old stuff from the nineties and so much more. I also stumbled on to old VHS tapes, Sparknote booklets, unused and beautifully crafted cards, and vintage looking posters stuffed in boxes in the back.
My heart raced with excitement and I began to feel like those people on the TV show, Storage Wars, which bid on cool storage units and then find a magnitude of interesting things left by someone who didn’t know what they actually had forgotten about. It was fantastic, and I probably could have died right there and just assumed that I was in heaven.
I spent all the time that I could in the labyrinth of weathered book pages in the mall until my boyfriend had to drag me out to go see the “Raven” (which was an amazing movie by the way, and I’m not just saying this because I’m a HUGE Edgar Allan Poe fan). I eventually bought a stack full of books for fewer than ten dollars and left the mall that day with a huge smile on my face, and I felt absolutely okay with spending some of my grocery money on the most beautiful thing in the whole entire and ever-expanding universe—words.