Lines from the Library

by Kate

It has been a whirlwind of a couple weeks, and a fairly silent one here on the blog.  In my defense, the two computers in our household crashed just before the red dirt wedding. I am generally the moderater and editor of this sister project blog, meaning that I call home, stalk, and harangue my younger sisters into sending me pieces on a regular basis. However, with no home computer I have been reliant on the local Lawrenceville public library for internet access and the entire blogging system has broken down.

I love the library. I love the stacks of books, the antique iron scrollwork on the shelves, the sunny children’s room, the friendly librarians, the access to reams of books and racks of dvds and internet access and shiny magazines. Back in Wisconsin, the Slattery family has always been deeply devoted to libraries across the Coulee Region in Wisconsin. This library hopping was likely connected to our rolling fines, which grew to staggering proportions as we cleared one card at a time and then lined up with stacks of books three feet high and higher. This perhaps explains my surprise that the librarians here are so universally cheerful and friendly. My young childhood memories of librarians are fearful ones of tight lipped and often furious custodians of a quiet space. This may be connected to the fact that we were allowed to run wild and free within that space, sometimes shattering that quiet. In fact I particularly remember about five of us being ordered out of the delightful fountain in the public square outside the library in LaCrosse. I believe my father was calmly settled in the magazine section, with a stack of magazines half a foot high.

The love of libraries has already been firmly established with my 13 month old daughter. Her eyes light up at the prospect of our daily trip up the hill, around the corner, and up the marble steps into our local library. She waves her arms wildly at the librarians and bats her eyelashes, holding out her hand for a tour of the stacks. In fact, she loves the library all too much. She does not love being trapped in a sling while I settle in at a computer and check my email, attempt to keep up with online business. The possibility of settling in to write an entire blog post has never even been a possibility before now. The child kicks, howls, and begs to be let down to run wild and free. As soon as her feet hit the floor she makes a beeline behind the circulation desks to join her favorite librarians. So far, they are still friendly, but the time it takes to write a blog just might be the same amount of time it takes to turn a friendly librarian into a furious frowning one. I don’t want to find out.

Today, the baby is sleeping and I am typing as fast as I can here at the library. And guess what? The computer next to me just went down. With a virus.

I miss the blog, and all of you readers. There are plenty of stories for you from here in the city, and from the farm. Colleen is graduating from high school, and Clare is graduating from 8th grade. My father is harvesting vast swathes of asparagus every morning. Here in the city, we are close to having a working computer again. Keep your fingers crossed, and hopefully we’ll be back to regular postings soon.


2 thoughts on “Lines from the Library

  1. Jenna

    I hope your computer issues get ironed out, especially so that y’all can return to regular postings! =)
    I also am a library lover . . . one of my earlier memories (I must have been 5 or 6 years old) involves Mom being upset at a library fine because I had somehow hidden all the library books under the couch cushions and then forgotten about them.

  2. Lydia

    I was wondering what had happened to you, and if, perhaps, you had already grown tired of being a blogger. I’m glad to hear it is only due to a happily growing little one wanting to explore! Hopefully your computer situation changes soon. Can’t wait to hear more.


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