Most of you know that I rarely watch television (my set is at least twenty years old).
Maybe this is because I did not grow up with T.V. I was sixteen years old before it entered our home.
I grew up with Radio (or "The Wireless"as we called it then). The good old Beeb (BBC) had many broadcasts which were unconnected with news and current events, unlike the current AND ghastly American National Public Radio (news, talk shows, political speculation and blah, blah, blah to the max).
That old Beeb had such programmes as "Afternoon Theatre", a five days a week thirty minute radio play, one for each weekday A radio play - by which our minds and imaginations created the sets, the faces of the characters, and the homes, streets and districts in which they lived.
Indeed, that good old Beeb commissioned Dylan Thomas's marvelous play "Under Milk Wood" for radio broadcast. It was never intended to be staged.
Thanks also to the BBC there was the super radio production of an adaptation of Galsworthy's "Forsyte Saga" (was it in fifteen or thirty minute segments? Did it take six months or was it a year?)
I know that the introductory music was from Edward Elgar's Enigma Variations. I cannot hear that music without thinking of John Galsworthy's Book and the BBC adaptation.
No visual sets but a marvelous gift to the imagination!
Words in radio dramas such as these, stimulate the imagination, take us into worlds which we have never seen, and introduce us to people we have never met.
I am not aware of radio drama in the USA, but Public Radio International distributes a programme called "Selected Shorts". Wonderful short stories are read aloud to a live audience in NYC, and then broadcasted.
I was able to enjoy it in Cambridge, MA but (sadly) it is not carried by WUSF our local S.W. Florida Station. More's the pity.
It was another gift to the imagination!
All this is but a prologue to a blog I will write later about my afternoon activity: - I read.
When I am not reading (mostly American) history or biography I plunge into fiction. I have my favourite authors and often binge on their works. *More about who they are in a day, or two, or three!
Save to say that this good fiction stimulates my imagination. I read the words, but I "see" much more.
I like some of the people, and despise others.
I recognize their voices. I can "read" their thoughts.
I "see" some of their faces and places. In a recent novel I was in a decaying industrial town in Wisconsin, a small village in the French Pyrenees, and in a small town off the coast of Maine.
I visited these places without spending a sou for travel, accommodations, or food!
*More soon? Maybe!