Monday, April 5, 2010

Library Tales


I tell you, this topic has the potential to spawn a whole series of posts. The people you meet in libraries are worth an entire book. Also, my escapades ( just a dash of drama to my normal boring life ) with my library have been a recurring issue all my life.

Day before yesterday was no different. My library closes at 8 pm. They strictly follow that time limit and make no allowances for bookworms, which I can understand because I know we'd keep them open till 12 pm if we could ;) Anyway..I reached the place at 7:45 pm and ran around like crazy trying to choose which book to take and which to leave.

Unluckily for me, I found too many good books worth reading. And...will you believe that they have a new section, named just what I call it in my labels on this blog, as 'Indian writing'? Which was enough for me to keep staring at. I also have this (annoying?) habit of picking books that have been sorted by mistake and putting them back in their right place. I started doing that, with less than 10 minutes left.

One of the staff at the library, who is quite well-acquainted with me, sensibly came to me saying 'We close in 10 minutes. ' I nodded and went ahead looking  for more books.

5 minutes to go...I had just picked Thrity Umrigar's The Space Between Us. I rushed to the section where they have 'new arrivals' and grabbed Hilary Mantel's Booker-winning Wolf Hall.

And then, with about 3 minutes to go, remembering some great reviews from bloggers, I picked Mary McCarthy's The Group.

2 minutes to go..I glanced around to see that there was just one other person excluding me in the library. And he was walking out, having billed the books.

They were turning off the lights. The library staff looked at me disapprovingly. They locked one of the entrances to possibly make me hurry up, though actually, I don't really mind being locked up in a library. Anyway, I rushed with my three books, got them billed and I'm sure the staff were heaving a sigh of relief as I walked out.

It wasn't over just as yet, though. Realizing that I had left my bag behind, I rushed back into the library, much to the dismay of those packing up for the day, grabbed my bag and walked up to the entrance again. This time, perhaps to make sure, one of the staff escorted me out of the library.

It was 8:10. And I had 3 lovely books to read with me. And a little bit of drama to write about ;)

17 comments:

rubyoverdiamond said...

As someone who works at a library may I suggest going earlier. Leaving it until the last minute to check your books out will do nothing to endear you to the staff who have been at work all day, we have lives too you know.

Scattie said...

Whenever I go to the library, I say to myself, I'll pop in quickly to see if any good new books have come in. As soon as I set foot inside the building it's like time stops for me and I think that I have only been in there for maybe five or ten minutes, then when I come out of the building, I realise that I have been in there for at least an hour!
My B/f used to come with me to the library, but now, after many long visits, he dreads it whenever I mention the library lol, I haven't got the heart to make him come with me anymore lol
Thanks for posting this, it did make me giggle!
Hugsxxx

Vaishnavi said...

Lol! This was like reading about myself!! :) Ok I figured out the awards thing and just copy pasted them. I know, I am a technical dum-dum! Thanks a lot though :) :) :)

Jeannie @ Pine Cottage Books said...

You remind me of one of those super market contest shoppers--1 minute to fill your cart and get to the checkout!! LOL

But this is really how it is, right? You can't choose just one!!

I love browsing in the library :)

Tanu said...

I think I have been escorted out of the library. I go there EVERYDAY to study and all the librarians know me. Usually 15 min. before closing, I stop studying and browse the shelves. When I am done, I have like good 5-6 books, with like 2 minutes to the closing. They have turned off the lights when I am in the library...now that is just rude :P

vvb32 reads said...

LOL - such drama in a library, who would have thought ;-D
ooo, you're reminding me. i must pick up my copy of the group!

The Book Mole said...

This brings to mind an incident in which a friend was locked up in the library when I was in grad school. He apparently fell asleep in one of the carrels and did not hear the very loud bell that they used to ring before closing. The library was rather large with many floors and nobody saw him. He stayed the night in the library, having decided not to call for help after waking up very late.

christa @ mental foodie said...

That's why I go to the library during lunch :) We do have self check-out machines though, so it's less embarrassing than having the librarian checks out 10-20 books at each visit...

Alyce said...

I live in a very small town, and know all of the librarians by name. The atmosphere in our library seems much more relaxed than at yours. There was a children's event at the library a couple of weeks ago where kids could climb inside big trucks that were parked in the parking lot. The library was technically closed, but the librarians would escort individuals inside if they needed to check something in, or just "had" to have another book. They truly appreciate and foster a love of reading (and these wonderful ladies also spend a lot of their free time and money on special events for the kids). Oh, and they even offered to drive some books over to my house once when I was sick for a few weeks (but I didn't take them up on it - I sent my hubby to the library for me). :)

Veens said...

Laughing out loud my dear :)

JoAnn said...

Very funny - gotta love 'library drama'! AT least you got some great books...

Vaishnavi said...

Hey! I have passed some awards on to you! Please check them out over at my blog :)

Kals said...

@Rubyoverdiamond - This post was in jest. I most certainly know librarians have lives and respect it. Surely...it wasn't my intention to go late. I most certainly love to be in the library for as long as I can and I most certainly don't enjoy being late. It was dramatic enough to post about, precisely because it was a rarity.

Scattie - Oh I totally know about how libraries swallow time! My Mum waits outside the library or does some other shopping because she knows I'll take ages to get out of the library :)

Vaishnavi - Thanks for the awards!And it's nice to have company :)

Jeannie - LOL. True...you just can't choose one. Especially if a library, like mine, has an excellent collection of books :)

BookMole - Wow..that must have been quite an experience for your friend!

Christa - Self check-out machines surely would help librarians relax :)

Alyce - Your library sounds wonderful! That kind of a library would surely encourage more people to read :)I live in a big city which sort of makes it a different atmosphere altogether.

Tanu - Haha yeah. One of their ways to send you out is to turn off the lights. That sends out a huge message ;)

Velvet, Veens - Glad I managed to give you a laugh :)

JoAnn - I loved The Group and yep..the great books were worth the drama :)

Kim said...

LOL...I could see it all. Especially the part about re-shelving the mixed up ones! I'm afraid I just request library books and then I go and pick them up and check out. No drama there.

Our bookclub read A Space Between Us. Even though it was an o.k. book for me, I was glad I read it and learned more about another culture.

Kals said...

That's certainly calm, with not much chance for drama :)

I'm half way into The Space Between Us and yeah..I totally agree that it's been only okay so far!

Uma said...

Hi Kals

So cute that you wrote about it... :)

Luv

Amma

Kals said...

^_^

Thanks ma :)

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