I never realized how much college text books were until my first semester while standing at the register with my debit card. I do believe I could hear the debit card screaming at me as the perky blond behind the counter asked me if I wanted the entire total on ONE card. Was this something they asked everyone or just people who looked terrified to pay $390 for a few books. I’ve not attended college since my first go-around in 1994 when I was 17 and I was there on a full scholarship so I never knew the ridiculous cost of “used” books. I thought it was insane that I was going to pay almost a hundred dollars for a book that a few other people had used, highlighted random sections, quite possibly even took into the bathroom with them and who knows if they washed their hands…..ICK! The thought of “used” books repulsed me. Ok this is a bit off the subject so I will try to get back on track. I was sitting in my English class today and I could hear one of those extremely perky 17 year olds talking about how she needed to purchase books for next semester and due to some financial aid issues she was going to have a hard time covering the cost of all of her books. I overheard the classes that she was going to be taking and the books she was about to purchase and wouldn’t you know it…..I had those exact same books just sitting there in my backpack. I did the right thing and pulled them out of my backpack, took all of my papers out and handed them to her. For the briefest of moments, she stopped using the words “like” and “um” and had tears in her eyes. She also gave me a very sincere thank you….well as sincere as you can be at 17!
I got this wonderful idea (giving my books to someone else) from Shayne (@shayneweltmer) a fellow classmate and photographer when he gave me his desktop publishing book. When I offered to pay him for the book he wouldn’t take anything for it and said to me “Just take it…..you’re a single mom.” Personally, I think I should be doing for Shayne and Beth Ann; they currently have five children with number six on the way. That in itself deserves some sort of reward!