I have to walk Mrs Dog three times a day. I shoot for 3 miles total but she's not always into a long walk, and sometimes I am not either. Around here that can mean that I'm outside for a minimum of 20 minutes for the mile, but typically I budget for 30 minutes on the early walks.
A habit I got into while skating was to listen to audio books, and that carried over to the dog walks. At 610 in the morning there are usually very few people out, and I've got those things screwed into my head lecturing me on Roman History, telling me of Trantor with the Foundation Trilogy, or as of late P.G. Wodehouse's books on "Jeeves and Wooster".
Except there's a problem there... the iPod's batteries ran out. Oops... better charge that.
Er, I'll get to that later... let me look at the new shiny object....
What's that outside the window?
How's the pool now? Still draining?
Let me bake some biscuits....
You get the picture. Ok, I can excuse myself for forgetting the charge one day. No problem there. Absentmindedly, I guess it really didn't mean all that much but I forgot all weekend. No Jeeves and Wooster today. Thing is that when you listen to your surroundings you start to hear the music of the city and the sounds of nature. 615AM can be amazingly noisy when those black crows start with their singing, or a flock of parrots wake up in the trees and lecture you.
I'm pretty good about taking the things out of my ears when I see someone so I can hear what they have to say, but when you don't wear the iPods in something you've become accustomed to wearing them in, it brings up how isolating those little earpieces are. They're basically the electronic equivalent of a Cone of Silence, or a burqa... you're there, everyone sees those headphones and ignores your presence unless you make an effort at taking them off and they notice.
Maybe I should find a better place to listen to Jeeves?.... Probably not! ;-)