AT THE BOOKWORM MEGA JUMBLE SALE

(Clockwise from left) Sujata Noronha of Bookworm: ‘This charity jumble sale is to raise funds for book libraries for children and related activities…it’s all the year round hard work.’ Jumble sales have recycle value: Some of the stuff going for a song or a small price are books, fashion garments, bras, crockery (which includes wine glasses)… books and more books, all kinds of odds and ends

BY TARA NARAYAN

IT’S as good an idea as any to raise some funds for a good cause! But Sujata Noronha of Bookworm says they’ve been working over a year to have this second mega jumble sale to raise funds for all their various projects in educating children of a lesser god or so to speak and one of them is to make books available to children. So it was a sunny day when their second mega jumble (said to be the largest in Goa) took place at a corner of the SAG Campal ground 9am onwards on Sunday, March 3, 2019.
Do folk come buy from a jumble sale? “Yes!” she exclaimed, last year’s sale had yielded almost 10 lakh and they were hoping for more this year. Over the months they had appealed to relatives, neighbours, friends, friends of friends, all kind of well-wishers to donate what they have at home they don’t want and would like to give away for charity. Many did for the homes of the well-to-do are cramped with all kinds of things no longer being used, some of the things pretty new looking and must have cost a bomb….here they were fit for re-cycling at the Bookworm jumble sale. Books, toys, household items, electronics, plants, jewellery art and craft, clothes and more clothes for women, men and children, some furniture, all laid out as well as they could be in sections beneath flimsy shamiana covering overhead…pretty young things could be seen digging into a trove of costume jewellery and at the clothes section trying on all manner of given away fashion attire, some of it both decently and indecently good! Some sarees too and what do you know — a box full of such fancy bras. Do rich folk give away and then come and buy too? It’s hard to say! I mean I went looking for specifics and actually thought somewhere amongst the odds and ends of a jumble sale I’d find a long lost glass paperweight of the old-fashioned kind which with a shake conjured up a snowy scene cascading within…. I’m still looking for it. I thought I’d find my two stolen Canon cameras at the jumble sale and could buy them back because I miss my cameras. Well, last year was a depressing year and there I was at the Bookworm jumble sale looking nostalgically at books, books and more books, never mind that I already have hillocks of books piling up here, there and everywhere at home and every now and again someone sternly tells me to get cracking and find another home for them… on one hand I am reluctant to let my books go and on the other I know I must now quickly detach myself from the worldly goodies of life one of these days! Books are worldly things? I bought a much-thumbed cookbook, ‘Karnataka Cuisine’ by Ranee Vijaya Kuttaih, from the jumble sale and a few more much to my trepidation about what would happen once I got home. My life has always been full of books. I retire to them whenever the blues catch up with me and feel comfy with them…oh okay, maybe I should have my own jumble sale to sell them and raise some much-needed funds…but then again, without my books what would I do with my life? How many of life’s reference points are books. I may have started out with Enid Blyton and moved on to Mills & Boon and Barbara Cartland and then came Shakespeare, Charles Dickens, D H Lawrence, John Steinback, Gerald Durrell, Kenneth Anderson, nobody writes such exquisitely poignant short stories as H E Bates…I mean I’ve already given away my Sudha Murthy collection to a young fellow seeking a future in social work! But to stay with the mega Bookworm jumble sale, I was intrigued by all the crockery on sale with some of it in such impeccable condition. Who donated all this I asked Mrs Dagmar Peres da Silva, one of the Bookwork trustees there and she said: “We had this friend of ours who is into waste management and purchased all these plain saucers, cups, bowls, plates and so on and gifted them to us for our sale…very sweet guy. He’s probably seen the work we’re doing with children in schools…” The rich may find it very difficult to part with needless collections of wealth and may do it very choosily but not the poor folk…their hearts are bigger perhaps. A moral here somewhere. Well, on that note, I purchased a set of absolutely austere six wine glasses and tucked them into my handbag, telling myself they cost me only150 and if the maid breaks one or two or all of them I won’t utter a word! Maids have a right to break anything they want in their haste to wind up hateful ghar ka kaam in ways to depart jhat phat. Some of my most expensive and finest cut crystal ware has been at the mercy of their fingers over the years and then I decided: If a thing of beauty is a joy forever I must dust, wash, put it away in the cabinet myself. And tell all aya and gaya maids they may not touch or go anywhere near my things of beauty! They go anyway and I must say this for whatever it is worth, all my maids have filched this, that or the other, and I don’t care. Life is full of thieves — there are just high class thieves and low class thieves. It is the hypocritical high class thieves I won’t forgive for they steal at public expense to live their vulgar grand lifestyles of plenty and obsessive greed.
This is to say jumble sales of all kinds are fun affairs as this one by Bookworm certainly was. You never know what you may find there…be sure you make it to the next one. And ….er…if you ever come across a clear solid glass paperweight with snowflakes falling in it — or the kind of delicate glass bluebird earrings I once bought from a glass jewellery maker while travelling in south England once upon a time — please buy them for me! Put them on my cremation pile when I go!
On that note it’s avjo, poiteverem, selamat datang, au revoir, arrivedecci and vachun yetta here for now.

— Mme Butterfly

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