Monday, January 30, 2012

Easy Listening

When my brother and I were young, we would spend our school vacations, along with the entirety of the summer months, with my grandparents.  We'd mostly stay at their home, baking or woodworking or learning how to play instruments (our activities were as varied as if we were at a summer camp) and when my grandmother needed to go to the store or to the bank, we'd get into their silver Oldsmobile for the ride.  If it was a nice day, we'd wait in the car while she ran in to do errands, my grandfather always turning on the radio to an AM talk radio station just for some background sound (he never let us change the station; only once when I was in middle school did he let me move the dial to a Top 40 station, but made me change it back when we got home).

The last few years, I've been turning the dial to NPR on my way home every night.  Instead of listening to the same five pop songs that seem to be on repeat, I listen to Michele Norris and company tell stories about the world.  The voices are warm and encompassing in a way I can't exactly pinpoint.  It reminds me of those days when we'd sit together waiting for my grandmother and listen to the newscasters' voices hum throughout the car.

A few nights ago, I caught the Backseat Bookclub, an NPR book series for kids.  Christopher Paul Curtis was on air taking questions from young readers who had just finished his "The Watsons Go To Birmingham," a book he wrote years ago and which won the Newbury Medal.  It made me wish that this was around when I was young, a shy kid reading by myself in my bedroom.  And I've decided to take on next month's challenge to read "One Hundred Dresses" by Eleanor Estes, who was also from my hometown.  Sometimes, there's nothing like being transported back to childhood even if it's just for a few minutes. 

Image from My Diet Consists of Glitter via weheartit

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