Today's Booking Through Thursday's question is a good one:
Okay, so the other day, a friend was commenting on my monthly reading list and asked when I found the time to read. In the ensuing discussion, she described herself as a “goldilocks” when it comes to reading–she needs to have everything juuuuuust right to be able to focus. This caught my attention because, first, I thought that was a charming way of describing the condition, but, two, while we’ve talked about our reading habits, this is an interesting wrinkle. I’d never really thought about it that way.
So, this is my question to you–are you a Goldilocks kind of reader?
Do you need the light just right, the background noise just so loud but not too loud, the chair just right, the distractions at a minimum?
Or can you open a book at any time and dip right in, whether it’s for twenty seconds, while waiting for the kettle to boil, or indefinitely, like while waiting interminably at the hospital–as long as the book is open in front of your nose, you’re happy to read?
I'm most definitely not a Goldilocks reader. I read wherever I can - yes, when I'm waiting for the kettle to boil and certainly whilst waiting at the hospital, unless it's an appointment that I'm really worried about and then I can't concentrate - but I'll try. The only time I really can't read is when I'm too ill either to hold a book or to concentrate on the words - that's most frustrating.
Times and places I've read include:
- Waiting for the lift in the tower block building where I used to work - I could snatch a few minutes there.
- Whilst cooking - whilst waiting for the timer to go off for the next stage in a recipe.
- Whilst knitting, if the book will stay open on my knee - that's one example of where it does have to be just the right book.
- When waiting in the car whilst my husband is in a DIY shop - he can spend as long in there as I can in a library or bookshop, I have no objections about that.
- Break times at work - a job where we had to take individual breaks - that was really good as I could stretch a few extra minutes if I was lucky.
- During the adverts on TV, and sometimes during a programme if it's not too hard to follow.
- In bed.
- On a plane journey, at the airport, railway station, bus stop.
- In the garden of course, preferably in a hammock, but that's not a definite requirement, any old chair will do, or the on grass.
- In a cafe or tearoom (but not a restaurant - that would be too unsociable).
- Walking round the house (I used to get told off as a child for doing this - I'd jump down the first three steps to the turn of the stairs and amble down the rest).
I keep a book in the car and take one in my handbag ready for that unexpected time when there just might be an opportunity to read. I can't actually read whilst travelling in a car or bus as it makes me feel sick, but other journeys are great for reading.