Thursday, August 23, 2012

38. Public libraries

Wow! I am surprised that I haven't blogged about my gratitude for libraries, given that I probably feel thankful for them at least once a month, aha! Oddly enough, I was never a big fan of libraries when I was a student - I would rarely study in a library, never liked the stench of old books, and generally thought that libraries were boring. I am still not a fan of that old-book smell, but love libraries now, and often make it a point to visit libraries when I'm travelling. My appreciation for libraries started with the Vancouver Public Library, in particular its Central Branch. The first time I laid eyes on the structure that houses this beautiful library, I thought of the Colosseum, even though I was yet to behold the ancient Roman structure in person, I thought 'Wow, what a cool library!' To my surprise, the library did not smell of old books, it was brightly lit, and generally had a feel good and open vibe, not a scholarly, snobbish vibe. It was love at first sight...and I have never looked back. I started studying at libraries, even the university ones, and made peace with the old book smell. I started appreciating how libraries were a quiet and free space to concentrate, read, study; about how it was an affordable, space-saving, and green way to read bestsellers and magazines; about how it was a great way to get introduced to new books. Now I get to appreciate the Children's section, and am thinking about audiobooks and downloading e-books from the library. My local library has been a wonderful support during my transition into parenthood, through their Tiny Tunes ( a song, rhyme and story time for babies and young children) program and other programs and services geared towards children. I hope libraries will always be something the government and public continue to invest in.

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