March 13, 2010

I Love TPL

As a young child there were three things I feared in life.

First, I was convinced that a “bad” man was going to climb up the television antenna outside my bedroom window, break in and…who knows what!

Second, my family teased that I was adopted and threatened that one day my “real” family was going to show up and take me away. Considering my mother was actually adopted, this was cruel and unusual.

Third, I feared the Library Police. This was a special branch of the police force charged with the task of dealing with cardholders who broke the library laws. I was a young girl who never, never, ever returned her books on time. I had the word “BOOKS” permanently inscribed on my hand by Mrs Beddle, the school librarian. So, one night when a loud knock came to our front door, I fully believed my mom when she said in a concerned voice “Jennifer, it’s the Library Police.” I immediately jumped up and hid myself behind the couch…a space that was much too small for a child… but I fit myself in! When it was revealed that this was all a joke, everyone stood around laughing and laughing. Except me. Not surprisingly, I still return my books late. This crazy approach to parenting didn’t work…imagine that?!

These days I love, love, love the Toronto Public Library. As soon as my girls were born I was hanging out at the library. We attended the weekly story telling groups, or would simply sit on the comfy benches and read for an hour or so. I love everything about the library. Borrowing books, cd’s, dvd’s, magazines, etc, etc from any library in the entire city…genius! Many days Andrew will ask me to pick up his items on hold. When I ask the librarian for his items from behind the counter, she usually hands me a stack of ten or more CD’s…nice. Our family really uses the library.

When my mom passed away, I immediately thought to head to the library and see what it could offer me. Yes, there are books on grieving and loss. I still haven’t picked those books up.

In September, Charlotte began nursery school and I was left with two and a half hours to spend on Queen Street. The library is a wonderful refuge from rain, snow, whatever. I simply pick up a book and start researching whatever subject I might be interested in investigating. After 7 years with a child attached to me, this time is golden. Not to mention it is the perfect location for reading my mom’s books. Warm sunlight streaming in the window, the faint hum of the heating system, soft leather seats and an intriguing novel…bliss.

This summer I hope to visit other library branches with my girls. I think this would make for an educational and fun adventure. We drive by different locations everyday, and I wonder if these branches are as welcoming and comfortable as ours.

1 comment:

  1. Jennifer...another great post on your really do have a knack for drawing in the reader and keeping them there..I think you should be very proud of what you are accomplishing. I got the warm and fuzzies reading the part about going to the library and curling up with a book there..there's just something comforting about the whole thing. Keep up the great writing..I'm your fan for life...