♫ “And as my mind begins to spread its wings
There’s no stopping curiosity”, Jack Johnson ♫
My grandma spends every afternoon or so doing crosswords. She sits on her armchair, half facing the window, her afternoon coffee steaming on the window sill. 1/3 coffee, 2/3 milk. From time to time, she asks around, challenges whoever is present in the living room but more often than not, her questions are met with a shrug of ignorance and a “how should I know?”.
But you see, my grandma has a plan B. When most of us prove to be useless, she pulls out her notebook and starts perusing, page per page. For all intents and purposes, I will compare her notebook to our Google, except she is the one who has input all this information in there.
No, my grandma does not know how to use a computer, let alone Google. And my baby pictures are in black and white. Todor Zhivkov made sure of that. But I am letting my deep admiration for communism take over the aim of this post. What I mean to say is, my grandma does not have access to those resources we call vital to our knowledge, so she makes her own.
Back to her crosswords. If the answer is nowhere to be found, she waits patiently until the resolved version comes out in the next day paper and writes the answer down in her Google. Diligently. This process occurs every day and her notebook grows richer with the most obscure capital cities, medieval figures and nocturnal animals of Papua New Guinea.
This, my friends, is what I call curiosity. The refusal to say “I don’t know”. This thirst for knowledge that can never be appeased, no matter the circumstances, no matter the opportunities that life gives or takes away from you.
“It is never too late to learn”, thus goes my grandma’s motto in life.
As a writer, I am only beginning to realise how right she is. Because in the end, curiosity is the writer’s best friend. And on that note, I am off to brave the rain and spend the day amongst books at the British Library.