Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 18 September 2019

The pleasure of reading books in print is incomparable

Our readers have their say on literature, taxis and mental health

Visitors browsing books at the Abu Dhabi International Book Fair. Pawan Singh / The National
Visitors browsing books at the Abu Dhabi International Book Fair. Pawan Singh / The National

I write in reference to your article Writers who immerse themselves in another language can turn words into bridges (May 12). The habit of reading books can save us, as well as change us in the long term. There are endless libraries and bookshops but parents and teachers must put in extra effort to make youngsters read, for the present generation appears to be more impressed by technology.

The pleasure of holding a book, the smell of the pages, becoming totally engrossed and travelling miles while sitting at home: words cannot explain that feeling. Books are now often published in digital form but I am sure there are still readers out there who prefer to read physical books and fill their shelves with them.

Reading has so many benefits. It strengthens memory, reduces stress, improves empathy, expands vocabulary and makes you wiser, smarter and probably more useful. Books introduce you to libraries, to silence, to magic. They change your subconscious mind and bring positivity, productivity and the ability to become better at everything.

Reading can take you to places through your imagination or events. You can never be alone if you inculcate the habit of reading because a book

can be the greatest companion. It can connect you with your inner self.

Lamiya Siraj, Abu Dhabi

Reasonable shifts would help the UAE’s taxi drivers

I refer to Haneen Dajani’s online article Abu Dhabi taxi driver shifts capped at 12 hours under new directive (May 10). This is a good start but I believe that cab companies should be penalised for imposing long shifts, not drivers for failing to meet targets in a limited amount of time. Taxi drivers should also have their targets capped in accordance with the number of hours they are permitted to work. Drivers will usually work longer shifts to meet their targets and ensure they get their commission.

Caitlyn Taulien, Abu Dhabi

It’s time to take action on mental health in society

I write in reference to your editorial It is vital that we break the stigma of mental health (May 11). Your piece on Darkness to Light, a ­charitable event organised in Abu Dhabi to support those ­affected by suicide, ­depression, anxiety and mental health issues, is laudable. Such events are necessary to support those who are most vulnerable but who refuse to speak up.

K Ragavan, Bengaluru

Updated: May 12, 2019 05:31 PM

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