Memories and an Author

I was searching our bookshelf, looking for a book for Alyssa to read. She has informed me that her current selection of books are “boring” her, and she’d like to visit the library tomorrow. While browsing I found my very yellowed copy of “The Cay” by Theodore Taylor.  Alyssa’s not sure she’s ready for “that book” yet.  She did recall that a substitute teacher had said that it was a book she really liked. I enjoyed the memories it stirred in me, flipped through the yellowed pages, read (and snapped a few photos, possible “blog post!?”) the note in the front flap.  I discovered, via the wonderful world of Google, that this great Author passed away in 2006.  Then, I added the book to a small grouping of favorites on the shelf above my desk and will remember it again some time in the future.

I had the pleasure of meeting Theodore Taylor in 1988, when I was just twelve, and was so excited to do so.  We did not have much in the way of excess funds back then, but my mom made sure I had my copy of the book.  It was a special event, and I even remember that my father had to “work it out” so I got my book (yep, the cover price $2.75).  Somewhere I still have the Suzy’s Zoo bookmark he bought for me to go with it, an added surprise. I remember we cut it close, and, if my memory is correct (twenty four years ago), he delivered the book to me at school. It was indeed a big day.

I was so eager to meet him and such an impressionable girl. The idea that someone wrote a book, one I really loved and that I was about to talk to him was almost beyond my imagination.  Dream come true type stuff. At that age the idea that someone, possibly even me, could write something that mesmerized, caused ones mind to visualize and travel to places not actually beheld, smell the air feel the wind, and walk the sand, sharing experiences with characters; that idea was hard to grasp but I knew it was possible.

Well, it all went as I’d hoped. I was impressed. I got my autograph and the opportunity to ask him the questions I’d wanted, all despite my almost debilitating at times shyness.  I don’t remember what I asked or what he said. The only thing I remembered was that it was a happy day for me.

I suppose there is no point here, but to tell a story.  Actually this blog post will probably be floating around somewhere in cyberworld long after my book has crumbled along with the memories.

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