I'm quite 'old school' when it comes to a lot of things (ask my niece and she'll tell you I'm just "old" - not really sure why I like her!!). I enjoy opening up a paper/magazine to read through (not that I bother with newspapers any more as they're either too depressing, too political, or full of adverts). I still prefer the feel of a book to a kindle; I do have a kindle and use it often, however, when it comes to some books they just have to be held and have paper pages (I've had people say to me "well, what about the trees? A book isn't very environmentally friendly". Yeah, ok, so an electronic gadget full of plastic is more friendly than a book that can be recycled and turned into another book, is it?!!). There's something about walking into a book shop (independent, always - although there are very few of those to be found these days). Scanning the shelves looking for the one book you know you want, and getting your eye caught by one you've never heard of, yet know you now have to read. They also have that smell about them; it's kind of musty and not at-the-same-time. Kindles are ok if you're going away - much easier to pack 1 kindle with 30 books, than physically packing 30 books but it's just not the same sitting in the bath holding an electronic device. In my life, my world, Stephen King books will only ever be bought in hardback; there are some authors who should never be downloaded and electronic.
A few people I know have those audio books - my Mum loves them, although the cost of them does put her off slightly. I looked into that audible for her once; figured at £7.99 per month that was a good deal, assuming that meant she got a book each month for the price. I assumed wrong. That's just for the app; you still have to buy the books. That soon went out-the-window. Thankfully, our local library do a good selection. Yes, Libraries; how those used to also be a joy to walk around. Highly frustrating too when you'd make a trip specifically to get a certain book, only to find someone just 10 minutes before had beaten you to it. I have discovered our library now has online services; I hope that doesn't mean they will end completely and everything will be digital, but I guess that's the way of the world now. I doubt half the kids in my town would even know where the library was. I can imagine the look on their faces if the mobile library was to park up in their area - I used to love walking up to ours once-a-month. It shook, it rattled, a few times when windy it gave the impression it was going to tip over, and you had to be able to breathe in if someone wanted to get by you, but it was great. I loved it. Then again, I've always loved to read, even from a very young age. Hence why coming into the digital age has been harder for me.
That doesn't mean I'm not a listener. I would have a radio on all day if I could - can't have one on at work as I refuse to pay several hundred pounds each year to be able to listen to it (to be perfectly honest I think they should pay me, for if I did have one playing I'd be promoting their radio station and the artists they choose to play) but the second I get in the car the radio is on (when I've not connected my phone and am happy to listen to my playlists). As I've got older, I've naturally moved away from Radio 1, so radio 2 has been my preferred choice (unless I'm in a good digital area and then it's Planet Rock). On a Saturday morning when I used to commute to work I'd listen to Radio 4 (I know, and that was before I became middle aged). I love how music can take you straight back to a time-and-place long ago. I've always been really good at Mystery Years on the radio, because throughout my childhood and teenage years there was always a radio on somewhere (I find it so much harder to concentrate on anything when it's quiet; stick some music on in the background and I am good-to-go). Again though, it's always been about the music, not-so-much the talking. This is why when podcasts became popular I never bothered to try them. The thought of listening to someone ramble on about something made me feel quite sleepy, and it worried me that if I was to listen to one, I'd most likely nod off.
Last night though, sitting in bed writing my daily crap in my journal - something I've started every year since I was about 10 and never got passed February (until this year and I am still going) - when I thought to myself "I know, I'll try a podcast, just to see what they are like" as it was late and I wasn't really in the mood for music.
Talk about overload. I had no idea where to look, whether I download an app, use the apple one, or go onto a separate website. There are hundreds of thousands of them out there. I'm going to have to have a chat with my brother (who I know listens to them often) for the best places to find them. I think I could spend all day and still not get anywhere (although I guess I could ask google). In the end I went to the BBC and had a look through some of theirs, eventually settling on a Miss Marple that was being read by June Whitfield (I know, of all the ones I could have chosen; being a complete novice I thought I'd start with something I knew a little about). Not sure if it was her voice, or just because of the mood I was in but I found myself really enjoying it.
I don't know if they are going to become a part of my life going forward from here; I have just found a ghost stories one that's up to Ep 60 so we'll see how we go with that; after all, who doesn't like a good ghost tale? :) I'll let you know how I get on.
Maybe one day I'll start up my own. I'm sure there are millions of people out there who would love to listen to a middle-aged woman who likes to rant about things of no significance!!