Looking back, one of my greatest regrets was my grave disinterest in books, history, and literature. I dreaded reading and sitting long hours in class. I didn't know mythology of sorts because I didn't bother listening to it. All my book reviews were based on a one paragraph summary on the internet (or on the summary and opinions of my classmates).
I haven't read a single book until my first year in college.
Even then, I wasn't interested in books, I find reading as a difficult endeavor - it required me to come running for a dictionary every 5 seconds. I think that was the reason why I bought an electronic dictionary during my first year. That year was challenging for me, I was learning things for the first time - things that my classmates already know.
Pang, I felt ashamed of my ignorance in all aspects. I had to exert more effort to understand things that were mere reviews for my classmates. Fortunately, my friends didn't mind my lack of knowledge.
Still, I wasn't interested in books.
But I was exposed to different titles, stories, etc. because my closest college friends genuinely enjoy reading. I would be quietly astonished as they discussed themes and narratives that I've never imagined. I was like a child hearing all sorts of miracles. It was exciting!
Alas, I was interested in books!
Fast forward to the present, I still haven't read a lot of books, but I'm reading one regularly - mostly self-help books. Although I would like to read more story books, I'm trying to finish first the ones that my father and brother have- and these are mostly self-help books.
Currently, I find myself immensely curious in Philippine and world history. I really feel bad that I didn't take history lessons seriously. Although I also think that the way it was thought by most high school teachers is partly to blame. They teach it with emphasis on names and dates only, and not on the stories itself. This is not to generalize though as 2 of my favorite teachers in High School were history teachers.
I think teachers (and parents) should rethink the way they are selling history and literature to children, because apparently the status quo is not working.
I am glad and thankful that I have discovered the joys of reading :) It is almost like traveling, but less costly!
I just finished reading Noli and El Fili (for the first time) last month, and I have to say, Noli is my favorite book yet. Rizal is truly a wonderful author.
"We shouldn't teach great books, we should teach a love of reading" - B.F. Skinner