Wednesday, March 31, 2010

A love for books

I love to read. Even if what I'm reading is not particularly interesting, I still get some pleasure just from the act of reading itself. If I'm sitting at the table eating breakfast and there's not a paper or a book, I'll read the box of cereal, that I've read already, but really I can't help myself. I love the way words are so powerful, how if you string certain words together you can create something beautiful, not just the image it brings to mind, but the words themselves can be beautiful.

Libraries must be the best place ever invented. A place you can go, filled with more books than you could ever read, all of which are available to take home and read, for free. I made it a habit several years back to always try and find the local library whenever we visit a town for even a few hours. I've been to libraries in towns we were just passing through as well as libraries I've been to several times in places we visit often.

You can tell a lot about a library by the way it looks from the outside, how big it is, how long ago it was built, whether the people in the town have forgotten about it or if it is the place to be (which most likely means a great story time for kids and lots of DVDs to check out for adults). You would be amazed how nice some libraries are, that in a town of a few thousand they would spend the money to have rows upon rows of DVDs, 100s of magazines to choose from, and children areas that will blow you away.

My favorites are the really old libraries, the ones that have been there for at least a hundred years and will remain for a hundred more, these are found in small towns, but they are worth finding. When you walk in you smell the unmistakable smell of thousands of books. I love that smell, it makes me feel happy and safe and like I've entered a world full of possibilities. These libraries always have big, soft, armchairs in an out of the way corner by the window. If I could sit in that chair and read all day, it would be a perfect day. One time one of the old libraries we found had stained glass windows, and I considered for a moment how I could convince Kyle to move to that town, without him catching on that it was just because of their library.

When I was a little girl, in the summer time, a traveling book center came to our community center once a week. It was just a small RV made into a library. I remember walking up there full of excitement of what I was going to get. To this day I think some of my favorite books are the ones I read as a girl, The Boxcar Children, Ramona Quimby, all of Judy Blume's books, the Babysitters series. I cannot wait until Kylynn is old enough to start reading some of them, so we can read them together and I can get another chance to travel to those worlds that were pure magic for me.

Today on the way home from the library both Kylynn and Jack just had to read one of their new books in the short ride home, so I gave them each one and the both "read" out loud, the stories they saw on the pages. Then when I went into Kylynn's room this afternoon to put her to bed she was laying on her bed, on her belly, with her knees bent and feet swinging in the air reading her books, just like I used to. It made me so happy, my children love books, and because of that there is a whole other world available to them.

1 comment:

Kyle said...

Two of my favorite old libraries are in Lockhart and Fredericksburg. If you get a chance, you should stop in.

Fredericksburg (TX):

Lockhart (TX):