Some of my favorite childhood memories are of reading books in the backseat of my parents' car. I cried over the ending of Where The Red Fern Grows (several times) on a road trip to Phoenix from our home in Yuma. I was shocked and disturbed by the ending of I Am The Cheese by Robert Cormier on a road trip to Flagstaff. Those are only two of the hundreds of books I read while other people were driving.
Even before I could read I associate books with the car. My mother can't read while driving; she gets carsick if she tries. When I was a little kid, we had picture books on tape. I had a cassette tape that read the book, and I had a picture book to follow along with. I specifically remember a book adaptation of The Fox and the Hound that I listened to / read many times.
As an adult now, I am often the drive, so books are out of the question (except occasionally at red lights). I do listen to audiobooks sometimes, but I prefer to listen to podcasts.
Even when I'm not driving, I don't read in the car nearly as much as I used to. There are two reasons for that. First, I like to chat with my husband or at least appear to be available for chatting (although that doesn't stop me from browsing the Internet). Secondly and more significantly, I like looking out the window. As a kid, I wasn't all that interested in scenery. Now on long car trips, I like to look around. We drove through Yellowstone last weekend and apart from glancing at the guidebook, I didn't read at all. There was so much to see. So much that I would have missed as a kid, because I kept my nose stuck in a book.
What about you?
Do you read in the car? Have your car reading habits changed over the years?
If you're interested, here are a few photos I took at Yellowstone last weekend:
Morning Glory Pool
Pretty pond with Yellowstone Lake in the background