My non-librarian husband on his birthday!
Think of all that you can learn from someone raised in an oral tradition, or someone who simply wasn’t raised in a reading culture. My husband never went to a library until he met me. He was raised in rural Pakistan, taught and read in school but mostly religious texts. He speaks multiple languages fluently; adapts much faster than I do and has more compassion and curiosity than most people I meet. Reading is a skill and a tool, not something he lacked, but he learned so much from traveling and meeting real people. A comparable and yet wholly different education than my own. I love libraries as a physical space but highly recommend against judging the value of those who do not or were not raised in a similar culture. I had to go to the library to travel far and wide but my husband, Sana, didn’t just read about it, he did it.
Happy birthday to an incredible, conscientious and caring person, Sana!
Sana Khan was born in the former NWFP province of Pakistan. He is one of eight children and we have over 25 nieces and nephews. He owns a small moving labor company, Khan Moving, and in his spare time renovates homes to sell. Although he likes reading in his native Pashto and Urdu languages he prefers US films with one exception. His favorite actor is Amitabh Bachchan and if you can get him an audience with Amitabh he would be thrilled! We visited our 41st state, Hawaii, for his birthday in 2012 and in 2013 we went to Iceland and the UK after he got back from Pakistan (and yes, his arms are tired, and no I will not explain why ;) ! This year we are buying our 8th and 9th houses and staying in New Orleans, a holiday town in and of itself.
*photo from 2011 birthday trip to Istanbul, Turkey*
Republished from 11/13/12 & 11/12/13