Friday, June 1, 2012

No one goes to the library anymore, unless they work there.

I love going to the library.  Our library is such a hole in the wall that if I want a specific title, I probably will have to order it from another library and wait for it to come.  Nonetheless, aside from church, it is the happiest place on earth for me.  Sorry, Disneyland.

Since my first child, we have been going to the same library almost once a week.  Now I have five kids, and we do the same at least once every one or two weeks.  We have a limit of 30 books each library card and a total of four cards.  We take that very seriously!  I am earnestly thinking about investing in a shopping cart.

Last month, while getting my hair cut, I was talking about this guy who works at our library who has hair down to his knees!  But the man who cuts my hair, Jesse, was more amazed that I even go to the library. 

“Why,” he asked, and I had to explain the benefits of making reading a good habit with children.  He agreed, and he thought that was “cool” that I did this; nonetheless, he told me that no one goes to the library anymore unless they work there.  (I thought that was weird.)

After my appointment, I walked up to the front with Jesse to pay.  Just then another male employee started talking to Jesse, and again, the conversation about the guy with the long hair who works at the library came up; the male employee looked astonished and turned to me and asked, “Oh, do you work at the library?” 

I cannot imagine life without my library.  I have fun choosing new books with my children and reading at home with them.  It is an excuse to share my favorites from when I was their age.  I love exposing them to good stories, but I will not reread the terrible ones; and, oh, how many really bad stories there are.  Then, by the end of the week, we need new stories; and back to the library we go.

Today I picked up the books I ordered last week:
How to Think About The Great Ideas by Mortimer J. Adler, which I have no idea when I shall be able to read it; Turkish Delight & Treasure Hunts (Delightful Treats and Games from Classic Children’s Books) by Jane Brocket; Reading Together by Diane W. Frankenstein (I’m not kidding – that’s her name!); and several titles regarding art and children, since this next school year is an art and music year.  

And in my favorite corner of the library is the used book sale.  Today I found: A Tale of Two Cities, which I already own, but I prefer this copy better, 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, The Turn of the Screw, and Building a Classical Music Library by Bill Parker (again, this will benefit our art and music year.)  

Every library visit, we drive away happy with not a care in the world.  It’s about the only place I don’t mind government siphoning my tax dollars for. 

Thanks, Ben Franklin!


Christine said...

Agh! A 30 book limit per card? We'd never make it. Last week when we piled our books on the librarian's checkout station, he said, "I hope you didn't walk to the library today." We hadn't because I knew the pile we'd be carrying. Sixty-five books later we happily headed to our van anticipating a great afternoon spent reading.

Ruth said...

It's good to know that there are other obsessed families out there, too.

Adriana@ClassicalQuest said...

Ruth, were we separated at birth? The public library is my home away from home.

Ruth said...

Do you ever go to the library and just wish it was a room in your house, with different wall coverings, of course?

Christina Joy said...

I often daydream about the perfect location for a house, and walking distance to the library is a must.

We are blessed to have access to not one, but two library systems here (although I did whine A LOT when they stopped letting us put things on hold at the one my taxes do not fund.)

I love that at the library I never have buyer's remorse, I never have to tell my children no (although I often do - I have a rule about books that have accompanying TV shows or movies), and a late fee is still just $0.15 a day. Good thing, some of those books hide under our couch for a l-o-n-g time.

Ruth said...

Fifteen cents!?! And don't you hate the ones that hide in the car for weeks?

Christina Joy said...

Well, overdue movies cost a $1.00 a day. That's where they really get me. Sometimes I find library books in the car that I have never, ever seen before. Amazing.