I got a Kindle for my birthday. After a day of skull sweat, dealing with an on-line helper who at one point remarked that 'well, it worked, but I don't know why' and squinting at a miniaturized screen, I got the device working, downloaded a few books, and happily began reading. And, of course, not doing housework, not blogging and staying up far too late at night.
This ability to get a book any time I want it is like a dream come true. We live half an hour from the nearest second hand book store and library and while I own a lot of books that I love, there are only so many times that you want to re-read something. When we moved out here, I set up an office with a wall of bookcases and into them I put all my reference books, non-fiction hard covers and fiction hard covers. I also have two shelves devoted to picture albums (so 20th century) and cases for maps and travel material. This left me no place for my eight large cardboard boxes full of paperbacks to be unloaded.
At the time (1996) this did not bother me, as there were lots of spots around the unfinished house where more bookshelves could be installed. In the interim, the boxes sat in the basement and I dug around in them if I needed something. When we partitioned that end of the basement, the boxes moved to the (unheated) cabin we used before we built the house. And there they still remain. Until we put a ceiling in the basement, I cannot install more bookshelves.
I go to the cabin occasionally and sort through the books for something I want. There are bookshelves over there and so some of the paperbacks are shelved. Some are stacked on the bunk beds, some still in boxes. The whole of the cabin needs to be gutted and reinsulated. The paperbacks, most of them quite old, have not improved by being stored in a place that is freezing in winter, hot and humid in the summer and damp most of the time.
Imagine then, my pleasure at discovering that a lot of these paperbacks are available as ebooks. Some for as little as $3.00. Since I got the machine, I have been digging around, finding them and loading them onto the Kindle. I can archive them after a while and throw out the brown-paged, unglued hard copies. And empty out two rooms in the cabin, ready for refurbishment.
Except, the last time I went searching for some of my favourites, I found the first and third book of a trilogy but not the middle book. The Kindle store has every other book by this author that I ever heard of, but not the one I want. I have discovered other sources of ebooks where I might find it, but that means more skull sweat, more tiny screens and, I suspect, more dealings with sweet voiced young dolts over the telephone.
Grama is being hauled, sweating and swearing, into the 21st century, but she is not loving all of it.