Do you miss your old journals? I miss mine at least when they are first retired. Flipping through lots of old entries with their colorful inks often inspires me to start a new page. New journals just seem empty and soulless for at least the first third or so. New covers do have the advantage though. Pristine, perfect, well, until they get smudged with tea, coffee, ink, or other evidence of use or sometimes even misuse.
For nearly three years my daily journal has been the Apica 6A10 and #5 will shortly join its predecessors on the shelf while #6 gets initiated. The paper is soft green-gray with pale gray lines. My fountain pens rarely fail to get along with the Apica paper so I am assured of a pleasant writing experience. Bleed-through and show-through are not an issue so I get 200 sides of lovely writing surface. The thin cover gives it a floppy, well-used feeling right from the start but even that improves with use.
Sometimes I want to dress up my Apica and take it out for a treat at the local coffee shop. On those occasions a Levenger Notabilia leather cover fits well enough to make it look upscale and professional.
Even so using that cover seems like a betrayal and attempt to prevent the very things that make my journal mine. It’s all those little smears and smudges, reminders of events that couldn’t be controlled or perhaps weren’t important enough to control. There are drops of Earl Grey tea inadvertently contributed by a friend. Then there was the day I spit coffee on my monitor, keyboard, and adjacent papers over a ROFLMAO joke. That joke may have faded from memory but the coffee stains certainly haven’t. Another time an ink spill revealed a delicate shade of pink that exactly matched the throat of the hummingbird outside my window. All were unique moments to be sure.
Long after I have forgotten these events though, my journal will remember. That is part of its purpose: to remember my life when I no longer can.