I know I just wrote a post about an author, but let’s say it was because I was gearing up for World Book Day! Besides, as books are near-and-dear to my heart it’s not like I can talk about them too much. I even got my new library card this week. And started a GoodReads account. No music monday, today we are concerned with letters!
So wherever you may be, you may be vaguely aware something is up— we just had the L.A. book fair here, Bogotá is in the midst of Feria Internacional del Libro—but I think maybe Barthe-, err, Barcelona wins this time around (as much as I hate to admit it) with their combo celebration. April 23rd was already St. George’s Day as he is the patron saint of Catalonia. To commemorate his slaying of the dragon and rescuing the princess, traditionally men give women roses on this day. (They also used to go to mass, less fun.) This also integrated the Medieval “Lover’s Fair” that was around this time too. Later (I found conflicting dates) UNESCO suggested the day also become International Book Day because both Shakespeare and Cervantes died on April 23rd (and later Wordsworth and Nabakov, how handy). Día del Libro supposedly used to be in October before then. I have heard a similar book & rose tradition is in Mexico as well, presumably originating from the same story. Also, a city is always selected as world book capital and hosts a particularly large event, and gets to remain capital for the year; it was Bogotá in 2007 and this year is Ereván, Armenia.
So, go out with your friends and loved ones and buy them books and roses! (I’m sure they won’t mind it being late, I wouldn’t mind…)