With my transition to a new job in a much busier work environment the time I get during the day to tune into books and other media just for me has become much more precious. Even five minutes of quiet time involves frantically checking email and possibly fiddling with my Kindle app. Anything I need or want to read travels with me to work and waits in my car for lunch where I eagerly shut myself away from the world between the pages of some new adventure (yes, even non-fiction books can create new and unfamiliar situations). All of my co-workers have been good about respecting lunch time as a break from interacting with each other (admittedly, it’s not like we’re being heavily cooperative in the warehouse, but there is some social aspect to it) and just decompressing a little…until more new people started getting hired.
I got cornered in the lunch room by a co-worker because I’d been nice initially, so instead of reading my book on Asian comics (yes, Michele, I promise you will get your review; I’m just really slow!) I felt obligated to engage in small talk. It was an interesting conversation, but I also felt that twitch common among readers who haven’t gotten to indulge in a book recently. It’s similar, but much less self-destructive, to needing a drug fix. Warehouse work is physical enough that I wasn’t in horrible pain for the remainder of the work day, but despite exhaustion and a very early morning I still had to read some before going to sleep.
But now I’m afraid I’ll be cornered every lunch break…guess it’s time to polish my death stare and polite but firm ability to let people know that I’d like them to bugger off while I put my nose in a book!