Today is a sad day for us. Don't worry - it is not a 'real' death that we are mourning, but it feels almost like it. Since this past winter, the boys and I have been steadily reading our way through the Narnia series of books by C. S. Lewis. These are the books that I most loved as a child, and it has been wonderful to read them for the first time with my little ones. Yesterday, however, we read the final page, of the final chapter, of the final book. It was such a bitter sweet thing for all of us. The exhilaration of the story, the satisfaction of the finish, and the sadness as it sunk in that there wasn't a 'next one' to move on to. But I guess that is the true sign of a great book, isn't it? That it can take you on such a roller coaster of emotions? That it feels like a friend in your hand, one that you look forward to spending time with every night? That you miss it when it is no longer a part of your day-to-day life? After shedding a few tears, and weathering my suggesting that we may want to wait a few months before starting the series again, the boys decided on a 'sure thing' as our next read aloud. I think that they truly needed a book that they new in advance would not let them down. They decided on a second read through "Gentle Ben" by Walt Morey. I am sure that we will visit Narnia again, hopefully many times before the boys outgrow my reading to them. And until then, the books will sit in a place of honour on the shelf right beside the bunk beds.
The stories of childhood leave an indelible impression, and their author always
has a niche in the temple of memory from which the image is never cast out to be
thrown on the rubbish heap of things that are outgrown and outlived.