Map 4: Habits

My Reading Ritual

Reading is one my favorite activities since I was a kid. I prefer to spend my free time reading alone in my room most of the time. Over the time, I realized that I have created a ritual of three steps while I am reading.


First one is lighting a candle. I collect candles from the places that I visit as a souvenir. Now I have a big collection of scented candles at home. I always light a candle before I start reading. The smell helps me to focus on the reading and ignore my surroundings. I create a new atmosphere. I also find it really relaxing. Depends on the smell, sometimes I feel like I am not at home anymore. For instance, if it is the smell of the sea, I imagine myself reading in a beach under the sun. That ritual is shown in the first picture with the red candle. I bought that candle during my trip to Milan two years ago. During two years, I light it every time I read a book for the class or for fun. I brought it with me to Paris.

Secondly, I grab myself a cup of coffee. It helps me to stay awake when I am reading a boring chapter in a book or when I am really tired but really want to finish the book and learn end of the story. But I think it becomes a ritual because it is my favorite drink. I love all kind of coffee. Latte, mocha, americano, cappuccino… and I think it is a perfect drink to accompany my book. So the second image represents my addiction of  coffee while I am reading.

The last but the most important one is highlighting and taking notes which I showed in the third photo. In high school, we read a lot of books in literature class and then write essays about them in the exams. To make the writing process more easier , I started to highlight the most important parts or the quotes that I like. So in the exams I could find them easily because colors get my attention. Sometimes I make research of the authors, metaphors in the book or a character. I write them on the page to keep everything together and not forget. Other than that, I thing my notes make the book more personal like a customized item. The things I write on the page are my ideas and the sentences I highlight are the ones that I find interesting. Some else can read the same book from completely different perspective and have different ideas or get a different message from the sentences.

Someone else can think that this ritual is weird but I think it makes reading more enjoyable.

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