Recovery Stories: The Girl Who Loves Books


“Once upon a time there was a girl who loved books. She was in love with a sad boy who looked like a closed book. And when he couldn’t find what he was looking for, he sat down and wrote his own book…

I stop taking notes and look out the window. Beyoğlu lies below, like a familiar, crowded, complex, gray sea, and despite everything, I think I love it and always will.

I’m at a table by the window of the restaurant I love in the loft. While I wait for my food to be brought, I lean over the table and write little stories in my notebook. There is no one in the restaurant except me, gray clouds are gathering in the sky, and for a moment I feel that I am on top of the world.

I also have a book with me. I just bought it from my favorite bookstore in Tunnel. Children’s book by Sylvia Plath. His name is Kitchen Kiraz Khanym. From time to time I shuffle it, smiling to myself. Then a plate of food is placed in front of me. I put down my pen and start eating, open my book and read.

Today I took myself out. I can’t finish counting the beauty of traveling alone. I went to an exhibition, went to the movies, lingered in bookstores, and now I have treated myself to delicious food. I never feel alone when I am alone. If I have a good book with me, I never feel alone…

Books have always been my best friends since childhood. My best friend, my lover, my guide, my teacher… I loved them more than anything. And I felt that they also loved me in the strangest way. At the end of it all, it was perhaps inevitable that I would turn into someone who writes books.

For me, falling in love with books means also falling in love with loneliness. As soon as a person falls in love with his own loneliness, he is forever freed from dependence on the presence of others.

I am certainly not talking about excluding others and living in my own shell. I’m just trying to say how wonderful it is to be able to be self-sufficient, to be able to sit alone in a rooftop restaurant and be insanely happy while reading a children’s book by Sylvia Plath. Sometimes or often I think we should let books take us outside.
I was once a little girl who loved books. I lived in a cocoon, which I knitted from stories, poems, novels and fairy tales. I was happy inside my cocoon, but I was still curious about the outside world. Then, one day, I fell in love with a sad boy who looked like a closed book.

Love was the book I was dying to read. Then it was the only thing that could get me out of my cocoon. I only knew him from his novels, and as my love deepened, I gradually began to see myself as a heroine. Life became more beautiful and meaningful the more it resembled novels. I lived inside my favorite book. And I did not yet know that this love would not have a happy ending, like in fairy tales.

Finally, when I couldn’t find what I was looking for in this sad boy who looked like a closed book, I decided to become the hero of my own book. And while I was writing happy endings for my own books, I suddenly realized that I was really happy. I was in love with books. I was in love with writing. No matter what, no one could take it away from me.

With a sudden heavy rain, Beyoğlu, lying below me, suddenly becomes secluded. Everyone took cover somewhere, waiting for the rain to stop. I, on the other hand, have finished both my lunch and my book, and I raise my hand to treat myself to Turkish coffee. Raindrops hit the window, Bob Dylan is playing in a restaurant… And while I drink my coffee, I open my notebook again to continue my story.

Of course she fell in love again. Inevitably … Especially, happy love, real. Of course, he doesn’t know if this is the end, but he feels like a hero again.

But now she is enjoying this romantic encounter with a children’s book alone on this rainy day in Beyoğlu. Who cares about happy endings when there are such happy days?

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