I was expecting to be somewhere else today . So this was a break in time. I woke up, made coffee, took the pot back to bed, and finished the final part of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol. As it ends on Christmas Morning, I usually start on the 23rd, read again on Christmas Eve, and then finish, joyfully, today. I calculated that I must have read it 50 times. Christmas is about tradition and ritual - so it is right to return to the same things. What changes is us. You and I are not the same. We come back to those texts in our updated selves, and, of course, the text seems to have changed. We know that isn’t the case. What is so splendid is that the text meets our changing selves. That’s why the best books matter; they meet us at the crossroads every time.

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