Monday, December 14, 2009

A Reasonable Amount of Reading Matter

Do you remember the icon-illustrated list that used to figure on the back of every plane ticket in the last century ? It went more or less thus:
Items that can be carried free of charge by passengers : an umbrella or walking-stick, a small camera and pair of binoculars, a hat, an attache case, a fully collapsible wheelchair, infant's food for consumption en route, and a reasonable amont of reading matter for the flight.’
I confess that I never managed to grasp what ‘a reasonable amount’ amounted to. The slightly outdated silhouette of the iconic man in the picture had his hat on, a folded umbrella , a book and a newspaper tucked under an arm. The wheelchair was apparenly not his own, for despite his reasonable load he was standing erect.
I never take enough reading aboard planes, which is why I have had much time to learn by heart the litterature printed on back of airlines tickets. But this is about to change.
I just bought online and received in Avignon an e-book - a contraption with a decent quality black and white screen, a slot for an SD memory card, and a battery. Wouln't it be useful if a .pdf version of a travel guide in Provence was available in .pdf format? A companion. Of course, there is the problem of rights. Nobody wants to pay anything for content the internet, especially if it is a small amount . Maybe I should scan an old Baedeker? the picture in this post is from the 1914 edition, in the library of the university of texas.
Baedeker's 1914 map of Avignon. You can navigate on it by clicking. So little has changed...You can navigate on it by clicking. So little has changed inside the city walls , it's weird... Still many gardens but the university in the eastern par of town.