I met her eighteen years ago in our preschool class, crossed legged, reading a wordy book in the very back corner of the classroom where the class kept the mountains of books. She was the only person in our class not outside on the playground, but instead, was lost in a story among the vast selections of books. I curiously wondered how someone could be so immersed in a page instead of being outside so I would do what any sane person would do, I asked her what she was reading. She gave me an irritated look and then simply raised the cover of the book as a response. Instead of leaving her to her book, curiosity got the best of me and I asked what the book was about. She sat in silence not wanting to give a response but I asked her, “can I sit next to you and read with you?” She silently nodded as she turned the page. This encounter would begin a life long friendship in which this girl, Ana, would assist me and show me different impacts books could have on a person’s life.
As the both of us grew and continued school, she out-read me by reading the high level books available, such as the Harry Potter books for adventure, Percy Jackson for action, and other fiction series. When it came to A.R., Accelerated Reading where we would be tested on the book weekly that we picked out, she would have higher scores than me, and I would be disappointed every time I saw my scores. Surprisingly, she was willing to attempt the challenge of helping me see connections between writing and reading text. Luckily, since we both had the same classes throughout the day we would try to pair up with one another to get some extra studying done. When we were not in class, but rather during recess or lunch, I would find her in the library as usual reading away her time. At first I would bug her to come outside to get some fresh air and not be as pale as a vampire but in retaliation she would stick her tongue out at me and continue reading. Eventually, I gave up on having her come outside. Instead, I sat next to her and read with her. From there, we would share comments or ideas of books or shows we were watching at the time like Star Wars The Clone Wars animated series. We would normally find common ground on the subject of who had character development in the show but she would still want to educate me about the magical world of Harry Potter.
As time would pass on and our encounter with literate English classes continue, she would help me write by explaining the assignment using anecdotes. She also made sure I knew what an anecdote was because she believed it is a valuable tool for any assignment. In case if I forget, an anecdote is a short story, usually serving to make the listeners laugh or ponder over a topic. In return for her wisdom of reading, I would give her tips and tricks on how easy math is despite her frustration with it. Sometimes I would try to do something similar by explaining how using quotes from her favorite book, mainly Harry Potter, by magically enacting that you need a certain amount of unicorn hair mixed with dittany to create a potion of some kind. Needless to say she was not to happy of my poor knowledge of her favorite book. She would even throw a pencil my way to quit my temptations of puns because they were so bad it made her laugh. I guess you can not add up to a good pun these days. All puns aside, we really helped one another in our struggle on school subjects in which we lacked but overcame together and we eventually became really close over the years.
Although the friendship we had has been years long the next chapter of our journey together is quite recent. Not only is she now one of my best friends but she is someone very dear to my heart. With more time together she has convinced me how enjoyable reading can be with the right book. When she first gave me my very own novel to read, Star Wars: Lost Stars, I immediately had the urge to make time in my day to have a chance to read a few passages and I would make connections from the book to the Star Wars films. Not only that, personally I have notice the events of the book grow similar to how our lives had hyperspace through us. In short summary the two main characters in the book grew up together and helped one another to achieve greatness in the Imperial Academy. However something occur which led to a friend heart break, similar to how once her and I almost became disconnected, but as time moved forward so did the strength of that friend ship which evidently grew into something more. Which is a story among its own, regardless, I have never felt the exhilarating feeling of reading on my own until now. Every story must be able to connect with a reader somehow is the main lesson I learned from watching her read so much. “Reading does not mean you are lost it means you are exploring a new world that many will never know because so many individuals no longer know how enjoyable a story truly is.” (Ana M.).