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Lidia Vianu - Director of CTITC (CENTRE FOR THE TRANSLATION AND INTERPRETATION OF THE CONTEMPORARY TEXT), Bucharest University, Professor of Contemporary British Literature at the English Department of Bucharest University, Member of the Writers’ Union, Romania.

 

 
 
 
 
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CTITC

CENTRE FOR THE TRANSLATION AND INTERPRETATION OF THE CONTEMPORARY TEXT
CENTRUL PENTRU TRADUCEREA SI INTERPRETAREA TEXTULUI CONTEMPORAN

 

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 TRANSLATION CAFÉ 


 

MTTLC
MA Programme for the

TRANSLATION OF THE CONTEMPORARY LITERARY TEXT

Review of Contemporary Texts in Translation and E-Learning

 

 

 

LAVINIA ZAINEA

Childhood Memories

      My grandparents had an extensive collection of books gathered in an old bookcase in their dining room. I remember admiring it in awe on the few occasions we children were allowed there: Christmas, Easter and anniversaries. In our mind, the room was mythical. We were never allowed in it without permission and it was kept locked. Every once in a while, we would get the keys when grandma was not looking and explore it. We would play with the crystal pieces, take out the silverware, and look at the books. I distinctly remember a two-volume edition of Tess of the D’Urbervilles, whose title I could barely spell, and a copy of David Copperfield in a black leather case. Every book had a fixed spot. If one was taken, the place it used to be in would remain empty. By the time I learned how to read fluently, I had already memorized the title of the books on the left half of the bookcase. And I head received permission to stay in the dining room outside special occasions.
     I made a habit of spending my evenings reading, always wearing a sweater or a light jacket. The room was the coldest in the house, and, even if the stove was lit, the walls were always cold. It had an old clock with a pendulum on the wall opposite the chair I was sitting in. The clock had stopped working years before so the hour it constantly showed was two minutes past two. The light was dim, but there was a mirror in the back, so I used to sit next to it. It was the only place in the whole house where I could be completely alone. I could stay there for hours and no one would come, as if the room were still locked and no one in it. It was there where I developed my taste for reading alone. I could not read a book in public until I was seventeen because of that.
      I was the eldest, so I had the room to myself for about four years, when all the children of the house grew and the need to keep it locked ceased. It became a public room, more so than it had ever been in the past, from what I gathered from my mother. It became warm, bright and friendly, and so much smaller. But I still know the titles of the books on the left side by heart.

 

 

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