Thursday, February 14, 2013

I Know It Sounds Geeky, but....

...the Bookmobile is AWESOME.   I'd noticed the giant bus with INFOMOBILE painted down the side in enormous letters parked around the corner from my house at a neighborhood park on occasion.  I'd never really thought much of it because I sort of thought it was just for children.  I don't know why exactly. 

But, I'd been just a little dissatisfied with my library-going experiences since we moved last year.  I used to be able to walk to the library as it was less than a mile away.  Now its nearly five miles.  So I don't wander down and browse the shelves as often.  It feels inconvenient to make the trip over there to return books when I don't have any other errand that would require me to head that way.  Matt can return my books for me because he passes the library on his way to work, but then I miss out on the library entirely.  So, a couple weeks ago I clicked on the Bookmobile link on the library webpage, just to see what it was all about, since I'd seen it so close to my house.

Turns out it is not just for children.  In fact, while they do stop at a lot schools and parks they also stop at a lot of senior centers and assisted living places, too.  So its for the whole range of people.  It also turns out that it might be the answer to my library-going issues.

See, it parks literally a two minute walk from my front door twice a month.  I can return all library books there--even ones I get at the downtown library.  They have a quite good selection of books (I picked up the Toolbox for Sustainable City Living and a Time-Life book on the great themes of world myth on my last visit.) as well as videos, and CDs.  You can have your items renewed just like at the main library, but very unlike the main library they do not charge late fines for Bookmobile books!  Not that I have many overdue books or anything, but I still find that quite cool and surprising.

I also have to think that being the Bookmobile driver would be a really cool library job.  Traveling all over the city in a bus retrofitted with shelves of books, bringing the library to people that otherwise have a hard time getting there.  That's pretty darn cool.  I'm so glad to have found this service.  The public library is just crazy with great services to be had.  I thought I already knew that, but there was this gem that I had been missing out on. 

7 comments:

  1. Being a librarian you will enjoy this abbreviated story (I will have to leave out the colorful characters from my hometown). I lived out in the country and in the summer I literally LIVED for the times I could access books. The Bookmobile came once a week and parked at the family store so I was able to use it. Later when I was old enough I could go to town with my father for the afternoon and stay at the library until he left for home. This was in incredible service and still is for the rural areas. Enjoy!!!

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    1. See and that story really illustrates the importance of such services. Everyone should have access to books...and lots of them! And the library can be such a sanctuary...a quiet, helpful place to spend your time without it costing you a thing.

      How big is your hometown?

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  2. No library fines on the bookmobile. That is an idea. I always "make my contributions" to the library. :)

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    1. Ha! Any time I do have to pay a fine to the library I try to think of it as a "donation" to a place that gives me so much for free...that makes me feel better about it.

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  3. My friend said the librarian is very protective of books and actually has stopped by houses and asked for overdue books back right then.

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    1. Don't mess with that librarian! : )

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    2. Oh, and I should add that I've heard of libraries calling the Sheriff's department to go collect books from overdue patrons and using the city attorney to get fine money from them.

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