The library is one of my happy places. There is something about the place that makes me very, very
content. No secret I love books, no secret, my girls do too.
I grew up with books. At my father’s house we had the collection of Little House books, and almanacs and (the absolute hands down favorite when I was little), the Reader’s Digest “Mysteries of the Unexplained” giant hardback book. I was fascinated by this book and would read it over and over and over again, and for a period of time was really afraid I might spontaneously combust like the lady referenced in this book. To this day, my father has stacks of Reader’s Digest condensed books towering in his house.
At my mother’s house we all had books, all the time. The favorite reading spot that was longed for was in front of the fireplace or the woodstove, but if that was taken you could always crouch down against the wall over the heater vents. If it was warm there was a lovely swing outside to sit on and rock and read, some people rock and roll, we rock and read.
That is where I started with Trixie Belden and moved on to Stephen King. In fact, I quite vividly remember staying up petrified many nights in a row after reading a Stephen King novel and though I’ve moved on from him, The Stand will forever remain a favorite.
The Christmas tree quite often had many heavy, plainly wrapped rectangular presents underneath. My sister will never forget the death of poor Blinky Bill, I searched Behind The Attic Wall and devoured Little Women and my brother made the Redwall journey.
So, it’s no doubt that walking into a building full of books could make me feel at home. Sometimes I walk in with a list in hand of books I have seen or been recommended. Other times I just meander up and down the aisles waiting for a title or a cover to catch my attention. I am a sucker for a good cover.
Sometimes I just cannot settle on one, other days, like today, there seems I will never have enough time to enjoy all the ones that are grabbing my attention. There are the favorites and the standbys, Jodi Picoult, Alice Hoffman, Anita Shreve. There are the quirky that I pick up again and again, Rafaella Barker, Anne Lamott, Bill Bryson. Then there is the whole cooking aisle that I could take out in one swoop of the wrist, marking pages to copy before returning.
I have to rope myself in and the girls are just as bad. And now Ems is starting this journey, with Ramona Quimby (another of my childhood favorites) and Junie B. Jones and the Magic Treehouse. For the girls the library is a happy place as well and I could not imagine a child who doesn’t swell with pride while they make those shifty crooked letters of their name on the back of their library card.
Things here, may get, crazy, hectic, overwhelming, but the library is serene (though my sister, the librarian, would probably beg to differ) an inspiration and the provider of multitudes of stories to carry me a million miles away and when the money is tight, it’s all there still waiting for me, with more, for free.