I love to read. At any given time, I am in the process of reading one or more books, one or more scientific publications, and several magazines. I read books, psychology journals, and magazines in both formats, the old school hard copy, bound format, and the modern electronic format. Mom instilled in me a love of books from the time I was a young child. We went to the library in downtown Fort Myers, Florida on a weekly basis. We returned all of the books we both had read and checked out more to read for the week to come. I had read every Nancy Drew book by the time I was 8 and every Agatha Christie book by the time I was 14. I was an excellent reader by the age of 4. My kindergarten teacher asked me to read to the other 4, then 5, year olds, every day. (I guess you could say I was the teacher’s aide because my reading allowed the teacher to relax a few minutes every day.) My friends still tease me about being the only one among us who could read in kindergarten! When I go anywhere that involves waiting time or the possibility of boredom, I take a book or a magazine. When other people are watching their ever present TV, I am reading. I prefer reading to many other activities, including idle chit chat with anyone. In places where there is a waiting room with a TV blaring the awful news of the day, I sit quietly, usually wearing ear plugs to guarantee quiet, and read. I like nonfiction books, particularly biographies. As rock and roll musicians age, they tend to write memoirs and I find these books immensely entertaining. Armed with reading materials, I am learning something new and most important, I am never, ever bored.
I share Melissa’s love of reading and, for me, this includes reading 3 daily papers, weekly news magazines, and “fun” reading on things like photography. We also both read publications like Florida Trend to keep up with statewide developments. I recently finished my first e-book on my phone – I’ve read them on an iPad previously, but while reading on my phone required my cheater glasses, it was a good experience in that I had something to keep me occupied even when I had no printed materials with me when “reading time” was made available because of unexpected delays. So, while I share Melissa’s enjoyment of reading, I want to comment on another point. That is, by being aware and mindful of her personality and perhaps impatience for things I have more patience for, like waiting for the right light, seeking the right angle, or waiting on the right expression or opportunity when I am behind a camera. Despite knowing that I was a photographer well before we met, she has never been willing to wait, as I am, for the “decisive moment.” Thus, it has been a point of conflict for me to be shooting when Melissa got bored. It didn’t take long for her to learn to take reading material along when I’m shooting or, importantly, for me to make sure that she has materials with her. For her reading is more than fundamental; it is a way of life.