Reading 500 Books – A Day in the Life

October 7, 2009 at 1:10 pm | Posted in Book Blather | 15 Comments

5:45 AM – Alarm goes off.  Morning routine includes carrying last night’s bedside book out to outgoing library stack.  Usually I prop up a book so I can get in a couple of pages while I put on my clothes.

6:30 AM – At bus stop.  It’s dark in the morning now so I keep a flashlight in my bag and read until the bus comes.

7:30 AM – At work, with maybe 25 pages under my belt.

11:45 AM – 30 minute lunch break, and maybe another 25 pages.

4:00 PM – Read until bus lets me off.

5:10 – 5:30 PM – Walk home from bus stop while reading.  Hope nobody will honk at me today, but who cares really?

5:30 – 6:30 PM – Go through mail, play with pets, do day’s housework.

6:30 – 7:00 PM – Family dinner.  No books at table.  (I cook on weekends, and my husband does MTW.  Thursdays we go out).

7 – 8 PM – Reading time.  My husband goes to garage to pound out replica coins, repair his suit of armor, or whatever mysterious project he has going on.

8 – 9 PM – Family reading hour.  Sometimes until 10.  This is only alternate weeks; the no-kid weeks I just read to myself.  The critters enjoy this time, too, and the parrot will even lean forward with her mouth open slightly in suspense.

9 – 11 PM – Reading time.

11:00 PM – Bedtime.  Read while flossing and brushing.  Luckily my husband falls asleep in seconds and is fine with me keeping the light on.  I read until I’m tired enough to drift off.  If I wasn’t a chronic childhood-onset insomniac, I might not be able to do this thing!

According to this, I read a minimum of six hours a day, not including FRH, when we read aloud maybe 10-20 pages a night.  On weekends I sleep in and basically read all day long, with occasional breaks between books to throw in a load of laundry, talk to my mom, or the like.

There are probably only three things I do differently than other people.  First, no TV.  Second, I keep my house as close to immaculate as possible, so it seems to maintain itself.  I’m extremely strict about everyone contributing, so I don’t have to waste my life cleaning up after anyone.  Third, I do read at times when someone else wouldn’t, like when I’m walking or brushing my teeth.  I officially endorse SoniCare.

The other thing is my social life.  I’m a recluse the majority of the time.  My household is set up so that we have designated times to hang out together without distractions, so nobody feels neglected.  Most of my friends are people I know from work, so I can visit with them from time to time during the workday.  Everyone knows I’m more or less useless with the phone and I don’t do e-mail or social networking more than a couple of times a month.  Sometimes I feel badly about this, but then I figure I’m not #1 on anyone’s BFF list anyway.  I’ll show up to visit someone in the hospital or help a friend move, but I tend to skip the daily check-ins.

I bring a book everywhere I go.  I will set aside certain books as inappropriate to be seen reading at work or on the bus.  I will also save very large volumes for home so I don’t have to lug them with me.  Often I have a separate book next to my bed that I read a few pages a night.

It’s weird.  I doubt, though, that I spend more time reading than a professional athlete spends training.  I’m sure I spend less time than a small business owner would put in on a startup company.  For me, my work as a secretary is just not enough to fill my days, so I read to add interest and challenge to my life.  With enough focus, a person can accomplish anything.

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