Wednesday, February 14, 2007

reading reading everywhere

I participated in the Prison Book Program last night, and it was such a great experience! Despite the long train ride to get down to Quincy, even. I arrived and we spent some time learning about the service, and then we were given book-request letters from prisoners and set loose in the book room, to find what was asked for (or the closest we could come, as all books are donated and thus every specific request can't be filled). I love spending time with books in any capacity, and I had so much fun selecting the best copy of a Spanish-English dictionary, or choosing a novel I had enjoyed when the requests were somewhat vague. It was interesting to see the restrictions that various "correctional facilities" have on what can and cannot be mailed to those inside. The people who volunteer their time at the PBP were very nice and so helpful. I am really looking forward to going back there again sometime soon! (Karen, shall we find a good time for us to both go? Yay!)

One of the most special parts of the evening was when the woman who was showing us the ropes took us down the hallway to this small gated doorway. We went the tombs of John Adams, Abigail Adams, John Quincy Adams, and his wife (she wasn't as notable as the other three). The woman told us a fascinating story of JQA's early life, and I learned that the flags on presidents' tombs are always placed across the top, where the head should go, and they appear backwards to the live observer, so that the body in the tomb would be looking at a flag oriented correctly. How fascinating. I also noticed that the presidents are buried with the flags of their era -- I don't know if it's how many states we had when they completed their presidency, or how many there were upon their death, however.

So I learned a lot and had a great time last night. I hope I manage to get back there at least a few more times this year -- my goal is to go at least once a month; they are open every Tuesday & Thursday evening, so I think that should be doable.

Oh, hey, and Happy Valentine's Day, everyone! Please stay warm & cozy tonight, if you can. xoxo

Currently Reading:

TITLE: Indecision
AUTHOR: Benjamin Kunkel

TITLE: Gone With the Wind
AUTHOR: Margaret Mitchell

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