Friday, March 13, 2020

Book shortage

Some of our library books were due yesterday so I packed them up and then, because we had read all the other books we'd checked out multiple times, I packed up the rest to return as well. I wanted to get in one last trip to the library before things locked down, as things seemed to be trending that way.

Thursday was a particularly difficult day, however, schoolwork-wise (mostly Benjamin-wise; he just couldn't focus but I did finally get him to finish his report on Harriet Tubman so...yay) so by the time I packed the kids up to go to the library I was already feeling frustrated. And then the entire road surprised us by being blocked off, so I quickly turned into the parking lot of the church next door and pondered what to do.

We had to turn in our books because a few of the chapter books had been renewed the maximum number of times and we absolutely couldn't keep them longer, so I decided that we'd hike through the little wooded area between the library and the church. So, with four children and four library bags in tow, we shlepped off through the urban woods to the library, but when we got there we found that it was closed.

A hastily scrawled sign proclaimed, "CLOSED DUE TO POWER OUTAGE," so we left with our books because even though there's a book drop outside I didn't want my books to just sit there in the bin not being checked in all day long (and then all night long, making them overdue). In theory they'd just override that (considering they were in the book drop) but I wasn't sure that they'd actually count them as having been returned on time. Late fees are "only" 20¢ per item per day, but (1) that's kind of a hefty fee since (2) I had a lot of items checked out (and always do...except for today).

So we went home. There were a bunch of utility trucks around but we also noticed that there'd been an accident in the area as well, so I don't really know what happened. But we didn't return our books and we didn't get new books either.

Andrew took the books to another branch of the library when he took Miriam to her organ lesson, so they all got turned in (except for one that was hiding in the basement (even though library books aren't supposed to leave the music room) which I was able to renew) but he didn't check out new books, so now we have one book checked out from the library, which is completely unprecedented for our family.

I thought about going to the library today but it just felt weird to leave the house when schools are cancelled so the kids can stay home (thank goodness I'm a stay-at-home mom and we didn't have to scramble to make arrangements for our little ones...granted, I've been homeschooling most of them this year anyway...but I really am grateful I wasn't one of millions of parents feeling like their childcare plans had gotten yanked out from under them). Andrew's campus is also closing, though it's technically still open for professors (and he went in today to do some last minute "how to switch from in-person to online teaching" training since he has experience teaching online already (thanks to one of the BYU classes he taught that was a BYU/BYU-I course (though he didn't know that when he took on the project))). He'll be working from home, though.

So we didn't go to the library today. And I'm not sure when we will go. Frankly, we'd like to do our part to keep our little germ-vectors from potentially spreading the disease to more at-risk populations (though I do worry a bit about an acute respiratory illness for my boys who aren't very good at breathing (Alexander with his airway defect (he still honks—softly—like a goose in his sleep) and Benjamin and Andrew are prone to asthmatic responses to colds)).

Fortunately we have a lot of books at home (and I just ordered a few (used) anthologies online, just to keep things fresh).

1 comment:

  1. OPL is closed to patrons, though the full time staff are still working. Josie made the cut by FOUR DAYS. When I picked her up on Thursday night, it was a hopping place, with people carrying bags and bags of things to read and watch. Our library is open to the public, but people are advised to sit alone and keep their distance.