Booking Through Thursday

What is your earliest memory of a library? Who took you? Do you have you any funny/odd memories of the library?

I grew up in Greenville, SC, which has one of the best public library systems in the country.  For some reason, public libraries in South Carolina are incredibly well funded.  It’s one thing that local governments there seem to get right.  The main branch of the library was huge–three stories, hundreds of thousands of books.  My dad used to take me there at least twice a month, and we’d always check out the maximum number of books allowed.

The best part about the library, though was the giant globe in the middle of the central stairwell.  It had the status of a local landmark, and it was a sight to behold.  It stood at least ten feet tall, and it rotated.  Sometimes I was just content to stand and watch it, waiting for the big red dot that marked Greenville to come around, listening to the quiet hum of the motor that made it turn.  As cheesy as it sounds, that globe really helped me establish my sense of place in the world.  I think that because of that globe, I understood at an age much earlier than most kids just how big and diverse and wonderful the world is.

Alas, the globe is no more, as the library has moved locations to a newer, state-of-the-art building, but sometimes I still wonder where I’d be without that globe.

10 thoughts on “Libraries

  1. confuzzledbooks August 21, 2008 / 11:06 am

    That’s a nice memory about the globe and the library.

  2. Becca August 21, 2008 / 12:04 pm

    What a lovely reflection – it is amazing the small things that mean so much to children. I wonder if children use globes anymore? I always enjoyed finding my hometown on the globe too.

  3. Sally August 21, 2008 / 12:14 pm

    I could see that globe; what an excellent idea.

    The local library by me has tiles embedded into the concrete walkway. Each tile has a different symbol on it that reflects reading, knowledge, world, etc.

  4. Bluestocking August 21, 2008 / 2:35 pm

    Wow 3 stories high! Not even the library headquarters was that big!

  5. icedtea August 21, 2008 / 9:54 pm

    The globe sounds very cool.

  6. Jenn August 23, 2008 / 10:58 am

    You are right about the SC library funding. I remember just adoring the public library in Columbia. It was spacious and open and beautiful with some sort of giant vegetation when you first walked in. I loved that place. Interestingly, I have almost no memory at all of the University library.

    It seems strange to just randomly comment on your blog but I couldn’t resist this one!

  7. Matthew August 23, 2008 / 11:08 am

    I loved the Columbia library, too. In fact, I just recently found my library card from when I lived there years ago.

  8. Jeane August 23, 2008 / 3:55 pm

    Wow, that sounds like a fabulous library. Almost makes me wish I’d grown up in S Carolina! All the places I’ve lived libraries are woefully short on funds. That globe sounds very cool.

  9. chinaman September 17, 2008 / 9:37 pm

    You shoud be the journalist with your nice talent

  10. Lisa October 31, 2008 / 4:50 am

    That’s a great memory (and who knew SC would have well-funded libraries!!!). I’m really glad I found your blog, and I’m going to add you to my site’s blogroll. Carry on.

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