Bookmarks are very individual. Some people like to buy proper bookmarks, expensive things made of handtooled leather, or laminated with clever sayings about reading and literature. Children’s handmade efforts can often be found inside parents’ and grandparents’ books. Some people turn over corners or mutilate the pages. I like to use whatever comes to hand: till receipts, train tickets, fliers, empty seed packets.
My father had the same bookmarking habits. I started reading some of his old detective novels after a recent clear out. He had, what seemed to me, a bizarre taste for crime novels. But I’m beginning to see the attraction. I’ve just finished one. It was a novel of humanity and compassion, with very little gore or attention to forensic detail, a book about human behaviour rather than a racing plot. I put it down with a sigh, wishing I could discuss it with him.Then I wondered if he had even finished it. There was a bookmark stuck about half way through, a loyalty card for a local coffee shop, also unfinished.
But maybe he did finish the novel and just left the bookmark behind. My bookmarks don’t usually mark a particular page, they just sit there for future use. I often leave them in the book and find them years later, carrying memories, like this one.
This is about personal memories, there’s lots more on what you can find in second hand books here