11.25.2011

my first days in the library

I love it. I love being in the library. I love being part of the public library, helping to make it work.

I've been placed in the children's department of Mississauga's Central Library. It's a huge department, and there's a surprising amount to learn. Unlike the general library, where materials would either be fiction or nonfiction, there are about 30 different areas where children's materials might be shelved - picture books, books adults read to children, then all the different reading levels, each with fiction and nonfiction, plus French materials (since all children learn some French here), serieses, graphic novels, "favourite characters" (Arthur, Berenstain Bears, and such) - on and on.

In addition, a cart that might hold 50 adult books holds several hundred children's books, and the call numbers wrap around the book, since the spines are so thin. And there are little people running around, and noisy programs like storytimes and puppet shows and whatnot. It's a challenging place to be a page, and that's good, as it will make a repetitive job more interesting.

My supervisor is friendly and patient, as is everyone I've met so far. Four other pages have started in the children's department at the same time, and we're all "mature" (euphemism for old).

It's a wonderful atmosphere, full of the joy of discovery, and the love of reading and books. And a humane work environment, something I haven't experienced in a very long time. More than ever, I am dying to get out of my private-sector job - which used to be well-paid in a decent environment and has deteriorated into an office sweatshop - and work in my community.

6 comments:

James said...

Four other pages have started in the children's department at the same time...

Every time you say "page", I get Groucho Marx's voice in my head, saying, "A page? You're barely a paragraph!".

But I can't remember if that's from a real Marx Bros. thing, or a spoof...

laura k said...

Ha ha ha, I love that. I can just hear it in Groucho's voice, too. If he didn't say it, he would have.

Amy said...

I am so delighted for you! I look forward to reading more about your experiences. Enjoy! And happy US Thanksgiving!

laura k said...

Thank you, Amy! And to you, too. :)

impudent strumpet said...

That sounds like fun! Do you find it hard to resist reading the books? I was in a children's bookstore a while back and I kept looking at everything going "I remember this!" and then re-reading the whole book for the first time in decades right then and there.

laura k said...

So far I have only shelved one day - one 4-hr shift that included going to various places to get and return carts. But while I was shelving, I wanted to leaf through every book! Especially the big hardcovers with beautiful illustrations.

This one really caught my eye. A boy goes to school and his new teacher is a dog.