The Life Enthusiast Chronicles with Letizia

Life. The word itself astounds me. It encompasses too many beautiful things all at once and often I find myself staring at the word whenever I write it, too mesmerized by its brilliance. A life enthusiast is one who recognizes life’s simplicities and extremities, and loves them without fail.

Last month Jessica over at Notes of Nomads kicked off my new monthly guest series…The Life Enthusiast Chronicles. In these posts, lovely individuals share what makes them all gung ho about life. 

Today we have Letizia, a blogger pal of mine over at Reading Interrupted. Letizia is one of those beautiful soul kinds, where everything she brings to the table is peppered with grace and good. Her love for reading inspires the rest of us to not only continue being awe-inspired by stories, but to marvel at the books themselves with their perfectly tattered beauty. All of this makes Letizia a shining example of a life enthusiast.

Connect with Letizia at Reading Interrupted on Twitter.

Take it away, Letizia…

Home is where the books are.

When Britt generously asked me to write about an aspect of life that makes me enthusiastic, I immediately thought of reading books; it’s one of the greatest passions of my life.

And as I gazed at my bookshelves for inspiration, I thought of how many of those books had traveled with me throughout my life and through my many international moves.  And I also thought of those books that didn’t quite make the cut.

Those of you who have moved an extensive library know that there’s always a culling process that occurs:  books you don’t know why you own in the first place, books you mysteriously own several copies of, books you think you will never reread or miss (I tend to regret getting rid of these, searching for them months later in a sudden realization that I must reread them at once).  You offer them to friends, you sell them to the secondhand bookstores, you donate them to the local library.

And all of the others?  These are packed in cardboard boxes and taken away with the furniture to be placed on great ships that will brave the open seas.

Here is one of my childhood dogs, getting ready for a move. I wonder if one of those boxes contain books?

Patinha the dog

And then the wait begins.  Wondering where the books are now, wondering when exactly they will arrive.

And then they do!  Of course, I’m happy to see the furniture, but …. the books… where are they?…. There they are!

Opening those boxes is like opening all of your favorite Christmas presents from the past years in one sitting:  every item is so familiar and loved yet new and exciting at the same time!

My childhood copy of The Otter’s Tale by Gavin Maxwell:


My university copy of James Joyce’s Dubliners worn from rereading over the years:


Rediscovering all my books reminds me of how much I love to read but also grounds me.  Each book is like a snapshot of my life, reminding me of memories past but with each new reading creating new ones.

The books make each new house a home. It’s hard not to get enthusiastic about that.

Thanks for reminding me of this, Britt.

54 thoughts on “The Life Enthusiast Chronicles with Letizia

    1. Each story has my tiny (the margin are small), nearly illegible (I wrote in pencil for some reason) notes and reactions throughout. I recently reread ‘The Sisters’ – fell in love with Joyce all over again. Definitely worth picking up again!

  1. Lovely post, Letizia! There’s just something about books, isn’t there?! Travelling a lot also, I have had to let go of a lot of physical items including books. Luckily we now have e-books and audiobooks so we can enjoy them on the road without the added weight. Although there is just something awesome about the feel of well-loved book. Hope this is something we never lose in spite of technological advancements.

    1. Yes, I can’t imagine the two of you carting your book collections behind you as you travel the globe; that would be a bit cumbersome! Although that’s a cute image…

  2. Books lure me everywhere I go. Anytime I walk past a bookshop, I have to stop in, if nothing more than to just smell it! I haven’t been able to buy as many books over the years for various reasons. I did make a promise to myself that I would only buy a book (a real one, not an e-book) if I know it’s one that I would read more than once. That way, I never have to worry about throwing any away. This has made my decisions on whether to buy a book much easier.

    1. The smell of a bookstore – so intoxicating, I agree! Your rule is interesting and makes a lot of sense. I think, subconsciously, I choose them this way as well. I’ll be thinking of you next time I buy a book!

  3. I have far too many books. Occasionally there will be a cull, but I’m still left with all those that I might re-read one day or need for reference. You talk very eloquently about the love of books and the hold they can have over you. And thank you Britt for another in this great series!

    1. It’s good to cull once in a while, to leave room for more books. And I find it’s a great way to get re-acquainted with one’s books (finding old, hidden gems). “Too many books” – never such a thing!

  4. A wonderful, wonderful post!!!

    Books have always been my true and loyal friends. They have challenged me to think differently and encouraged me to be open to all possibilities. I remember the day I first read “Green Eggs & Ham.” And then I cried through “Gone With The Wind,” I was 15 when I first meet C.S. Lewis and his pal, “J.R.R. Tolkien. They have been by my side through the decades.

    “The Road goes ever on and on
    Down from the door where it began.
    Now far ahead the Road has gone,
    And I must follow, if I can,
    Pursuing it with eager feet,
    Until it joins some larger way
    Where many paths and errands meet.
    And whither then? I cannot say”
    ― J.R.R. Tolkien, The Fellowship of the Ring

    1. Oh, Rebecca, I love that you brought us on your own journey – your own road – of books. I love that you remember reading “Green Eggs and Ham” for the first time. What wonderful traveling companions these books have been. Thank you, as ever, for your lovely words!

      1. You reminded me of my favourite Dr. Seuss quote:

        “You’re off to Great Places!
        Today is your day!
        Your mountain is waiting,
        So… get on your way!”
        ― Dr. Seuss, Oh, the Places You’ll Go!

  5. This was a lovely post; it’s nice to know what you’re enthusiastic about, Letizia… though, given your blog posts, it’s not difficult to guess. 😉 I agree with you about rediscovering books. Sometimes I am so engrossed in my new books that when I revisit my old ones I’m overcome with such a feeling of nostalgia.

    1. Letizia did such an awesome job. Her piece gave me goosebumps when I read it, because I feel overwhelmed with nostalgia as well when visiting my oldies. Such a great feeling.

  6. What would life be without reading adventures of the mind? Reading is ingrained into my life and I read books to learn, to see, to feel and be carried away. Wonderful post, Letizia! And a great site you’ve recommended.

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