This is what happened. We moved from Sweden to England. With us we brought our entire household – a lot of stuff. Books included. Many of them. Many we did not need, so my husband kept repeating. I did not agree with him. I think shelves full of books bring atmosphere to a room; it doesn’t matter so much if the books haven’t yet been read or perhaps never will be. I succumbed, however, and six removal boxes full of mostly Swedish books was the result after we’d gone through them all – when we were already in England of course… What should we do with them? Throw them away was out of the question – sacrilège! Lucky us, I discovered Oxfam and their foreign books section. Soon, Oxfam in our little town will have a big section of Swedish books (that will by far outnumber the actual Swedish speakers who live here). Every time I walk into town, heaps of books fill my buggy basket.
A few weeks ago, I went to Sweden with my daughter to visit my brother, his partner and their brand new baby girl. She was beautiful of course – but so were their massive bookshelves, built directly onto one of the walls, covering it all the way up to the ceiling. Beautiful. I got second thoughts about our massive clear-out, in particular I started to regret having given away three dictionaries. A Christmas gift from my mum. I got sentimental. Had to get them back. The most precious one – Bevingat – is about expressions, proverbs etc. and might be useful in my work as a translator I think. But guess what – even though they’re such amazing books, nobody had bought them yet! Lucky me and lucky Oxfam. A win-win situation, I got my books back, Oxfam actually managed to sell a few of their Swedish books and money went to a good cause. Happy end!
Also, the books now have double inscriptions in them. Cool.