I've been busy over the past few weeks with my data collection, which is going all right. As some of you may recall, one of my biggest concerns with my dissertation was gaining access to people with dementia, and I've had both some very positive and some negative encounters with gatekeepers, but I'm slowly getting there. My goal is to finish my data collection by the end of August so that I have all of September to work on my analysis and discussion. Josh has been fantastically helpful by driving me to all these places I've been doing interviews and I wouldn't be able to do it without his willingness to sit in the car for hours on end while I'm collecting information! He starts his new job on Monday though, so I shall be on my own again and hopefully able to rely on public transportation. A few weeks ago I took a train to a quite rural area nearby and it was an adorable little single-car train, with the engine and passenger seating all in one. All the passengers and staff seemed to know each other as well, and it was quite quaint and made me happy (you can see a photo of a similar one here).
Today Josh, Karen and I went to a village called Cenarth near where Amber and Greg live, and it was nice weather and really pretty. The local church has a secondhand bookshop based on donations, and for a donation of £1 I got a 1909 edition of Jane Eyre. I think I've inadvertently begun collecting old copies of Brontë books, because back in the fall at a car boot sale I bought a 1929 copy of another novel of hers, Shirley, for 50 pence. I haven't read that one yet, but I love Jane Eyre and it's just quite cool to think about how old these books are--as Josh said, they've survived two World Wars! Jane Eyre is a bit worse for the wear--I almost didn't spot it because the piece of the spine with the actual title on it had torn off, so it only has the author, and the whole spine itself is almost coming off. I'm hoping to figure out how to mend it with some heavy-duty needle and thread. But the pages themselves seem to be in fantastic condition...drool!!