This past week I re-read one of my very favourite books, Charlotte’s Web. It was one of the few favourite childhood books I brought to Korea with me as gifts to my school, and I read it on my breaks at work. This time around, I also read the foreword from the 60th anniversary edition by Kate DiCamillo for the first time. In it, she quotes E.B. White: “All that I hope to say in books, all that I ever hope to say, is that I love the world.” What an incredibly perfect goal that is. I interpret it as encouragement to always try to celebrate the beauty of nature, the best parts of our days, and the lovely little things.
I read the book differently this time. I noticed the descriptions of nature more, I noticed the sadness more, and I noticed all sorts of subtle things I’d never picked up on when I was young but which made me love it more than ever. That said, all my favourite parts were still my favourite: Wilbur glowing white and pink after his buttermilk bath, the descriptions of the food scraps that the pig and the rat share, the poise and vocabulary of Charlotte, and the excitement of the rope swing. It transported me right back to my childhood.
The quote above from the book sums up how I’m feeling about life these days, and it reminds me of how I want to live. I want to be grateful and appreciative, I want to notice all the magic and the beauty around me, I want to feel it all as it’s happening, I want to stay present and not wish for the past or the future. These are the days. The photo was taken in my early days of living in Korea, at Haeundae beach on a beautifully clear morning.
I made the quote into a computer wallpaper download if you’d like a copy to dress up your desktop this month.