I began my intense love affair with books in 2008 when I found myself unemployed. Having no job, I found myself reading then writing a book review about it which I enjoyed immensely that it became a habit. Up to now (with a job and all), after reading a book, I write a book review and post it here in WordPress. I always look forward to reading the next book and the next and the next. Lucky is the one who has a job like that and gets paid.
In my darkest, saddest moments, one of the places I go to is a bookstore. I don’t always have the money to purchase one so I’d just read whatever it was that my mind would like to capture in a limited time by picking a book or two from the shelves that are for sale but not wrapped by plastic (read: a message from the author that you can take a peek of what’s inside to help you decide if you want to buy it or not. And if not, it’s okay). There, I would sit down on the floor, not minding the dirt sticking to my jeans, and just be one with a book I’m holding. And the Bestseller bookstore in Robinsons Galleria became my refuge during sad times when I was still working in Ortigas Center, a business center in Pasig City. Interestingly, even when I was no longer working there because of my change of residence, I’d still make the effort to go there.
It is sad that you cannot find any library in a community or a big, spacious bookstore in a mall, or just anywhere but accessible, that you can hangout when you want to escape for a while from the real world and just be. Coffee shops are becoming crowded and filled with people that can’t stop talking. If you stay in a restaurant with less customers to read your book, waiters/waitresses/service crews or a creepy fellow customer will look at you as if you’re from outer space, not of this earth. Maybe that’s why I have loved hanging out in a bookstore. Nobody gives you a shit.
At present, I rarely hangout in a bookstore anymore. Bookstores are becoming smaller nowadays, some are being shut down, because of the continuous increase of rentals or whatever reason that I don’t know about.
I am posting this in loving memory of Bestseller bookstore (owned by National Bookstore) in Robinsons Galleria which closed down a few years ago. Glad I took a souvenir photo from 2012.