Hard to digest that it has been more than eight years since I started accompanying the Rainbow Reading Gardens (Taman Bacaan Pelangi, TBP) in its journey. Each year, I set aside time to visit our* libraries. For me, personally, those visits are crucial. They serve as a reminder of why I am doing all these.
Tak terasa, sudah delapan tahun lebih saya mengiringi Taman Bacaan Pelangi bertumbuh. Setiap tahun, saya selalu menyempatkan diri untuk mengunjungi perpustakaan kami*. Bagi saya pribadi, kunjungan-kunjungan tersebut penting. Mereka mengingatkan saya kembali kenapa saya melakukan semua ini.
Imagine walking into a simple porch in a small village in an island in eastern Indonesia, and seeing 60-70 children sitting and quietly reading their storybooks. Drowned in an imaginary world beyond what they had ever seen.
No one was running about. A few whispered quietly to one another. One or two read the books for the smaller children beside them. As they finished one book, they swiftly went to the bookshelf to get another. Then, again, they quietly sat and read.
A trip to Taman Bacaan Pelangi libraries is always a heart-warming one, with occasional unexpected twist and turns. The recent trip was by no means an exception.
Joining the then-upcoming trip to open a new library in Alor, East Nusa Tenggara, last August, was an instant yes from my heart. Even before I was offered to come.