Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Finally "reading" the classics (a.k.a. another foot story sort of)

Before I retired from the USAF I was volunteering for the local Friends of the Library group(s). I was working shifts so I had time off during the week when my husband was working. I kept coming across all the classic fiction that you don't want to read when you are growing up. When you "have to" read something because a teacher assigns it your enthusiasm level is low.

Now that I'm all grown up I thought I'd read these books during retirement. Unfortunately wanting to and actually doing are two different things. I found myself getting distracted by the latest and greatest and then discovering other books by that author. I was volunteering with other folks at the library that...liked to read (go figure!). They'd mention books they recently read and liked so I'd get a copy and read it.

Then I had my foot surgery last May. After that I decided to finally start going to a chiropractor. During my initial treatments he didn't want me riding my bike too much. His idea of a short ride was about 1-2 miles, mine was about 8 miles. He wanted me to walk, which turned out great for my foot too. At first I just absorbed the sights and sounds of the neighborhood. One of my crafting friends mentioned she listens to books on tape when she walks and that's the only way she can find out what happens in her book. I decided to give the audio book thing a try.

I set up a free account with my library to download audio books. I set them up in my iTunes as .mp3 files and loaded them as one long song. That works fine until you do something else with the iPod since the book plays from the beginning and doesn't save your place. I then discovered a way to change the format from .mp3 to the Apple .m4b audio book file via free software. Now I can stop and start and play something else and the book automatically resumes where I left off. I also discovered there are a few other sites where you can download books for free.

I started with the Alice in Wonderland, The Wizard of Oz and then The Swiss Family Robinson. I'll keep "reading" the classics and discovering what I missed as a kid (or read and forgot).

Until my next post,

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