By Dawn Onley
The library is my happy place. It’s the place I go to lose myself.
We all need a happy place – somewhere that we go and instantly feel excited and alive. For me, there’s just something about the look and smell of the library, the people, the rows and rows of books beckoning to take me on all types of journeys, the unlimited options and worlds that await me, the solitude and peace that transfixes me.
To me, opening up a book feels like opening up a present. Here, I feel right at home. They get me. I’m one of them.
I love going alone to the library to relax and discover. I also love taking my son to the library and watching the excitement in his eyes. Last summer, I came to the library one day to sign my son up for a summer reading challenge. I had technically already signed him up online, but I wanted to start checking out some books plus I had a few questions about the challenge.
So I found the children’s resource librarian and got the goods. She informed me that he could win badges and prizes based on the number of books he read and the activities he completed. I was instantly thrilled thinking back to my own childhood when my mom would delight me, my sister and brother by taking us to the library, and how we were always eager to read and compete (mostly against each other) in the summer reading challenge.
While I was going down memory lane with the librarian and also asking her questions about some of the books on a recommended reading list for kindergarteners I picked up, I didn’t realize that a line had started to form behind me. I apologized to her for holding her up and getting in the way.
“You’re not in my way,” she said. “Look, even if you woke up with the intent to get in my way, you couldn’t.” We both laughed. “That is a great attitude,” I said.
And it is.
Nothing, or no one, should knock us off our happy train — intentional or not. I mean, how is that even possible anyway in a library, when you’re surrounded by books and adventures and discoveries?
All is right in the world.