I haven’t borrowed a book from our local library for over a year. This has nothing to do with the library in question or its resources or the books contained therein.
It’s simply that with the advent of smartphones and e readers libraries are not as prevalent in my life as they once were.
Return to my childhood however and it was an entirely different scenario. I would visit my local library at least once a week to borrow and return books and spend hours browsing the book racks, diligently spinning them in hopes of discovering an author I hadn’t already come upon.
If I had a project for school and my text books or the trusty Encyclopedia Britannica we had at home didn’t cover the subject in enough detail I would scour the library for additional information in their reference books that were kept in a special section you had to have special permission to access.
When I look at the way technology has advanced just in the last 10 years with Internet usage and search engines it’s a staggeringly different homework search when my children come to it.
There were many times Google could have helped me swot for an exam or pick a quote to polish a project to my advantage and the entire process would have been far quicker I’m sure.
But when I need to do research now and turn to Google or some such search engine I know the history behind the information I’m looking for because I found it for myself in a library years earlier.
Social media and instant messaging and the entire wealth of information at your fingertips is one thing but it cannot take away the richness of unearthing knowledge for yourself. That relief and quickening of the pulse that accompanies treasure gleaned from books.
Sadly that’s something some children today will never experience and that’s a sad fact for all of us…….