When I was a young girl I used to go to the library with my mother and she let me take out books on her library card but this one particular library trip when I think I was about eight or nine, she wanted to take out a lot of books and so did I. We were standing at the desk and the librarian was watching us and my mother said to me as I stood there with a stack of books in my arms, “I think you’ll have to put some of those back.”
Understandably my face fell and the watching librarian said to me, “Why don’t you take out a library card of your own and then you can take out all those books?”
I felt like I’d been given the keys to paradise and I remember being really excited. I remember it being one of the most exciting events in my childhood and certainly something I have never regretted.
So what about you? When did you get into libraries?
This is a poem I wrote a while ago. Using it now is probably wishful thinking as the last few days have been so hot I would actually welcome a bit of cooling rain right now.
Curtain of water,
Familiar blanket of wetness,
Grey skied creator of puddles,
Stealer of the sun;
Drowning warmth in your cold dampness,
Sliding over the street and dripping from drainpipes.
Playing on the ground.
The advantage of living in Bath, apart from all the wonderful eighteenth century architecture, is that there are lots of great attractions here. Just one of them is the Jane Austen Museum. The house it is in is not actually the house Jane herself lived in but it is almost exactly the same as the house Jane lived in was only about two doors up the street and the layout inside is identical.
The first photo is of a sort of writing table that Jane Austen might have used. The second photo (who is that elegant woman?) is me wearing eighteenth century type clothes. And the third photo was taken on a day when the Jane Austen Society in Bath all dress up in period clothing and have a parade in Bath. I only found about this by accident. When I first saw them all, I thought it was a film set (not unusual in Bath).
It wasn’t until I asked someone that they told me. Everyone looked much more elegant than I did because my photo was just a quick snap taken inside the museum whereas they had all made their own costumes and lavished a great deal of time and effort on looking the part. I think they all look wonderful!