Monday, January 23, 2006

Library Boy

This week, Francine suggested that I start taking Alexander to the library Saturday mornings as part of our "boys day out" -- we usually did errands like heading to Home Depot or Canadian Tire or something. But this seemed much more appealing. After all, it would be great to try a regular change of books to read him at bedtime (without having to buy the whole store every month), and I did need to get a few JavaScript books to prepare for an advanced scripting course I'll be attending in Pittsburgh in a couple of months.

But, oh man, did I ever forget how wonderful, how marvellous, how spectacular, how beautiful, how magical, a trip to the library is. We visited Hamilton Public Library's Terryberry Branch. (The very same one that Francine enjoyed going to when she was a girl). It opened at 10:00 AM and we arrived by about quarter after. And the parking lot was already full.

We ended up spending two hours in the library, picking out a few books that I could read to Alexander this week, picking up a few books for me, and also, of course, playing with the other kids with the fun train station and other wonderful activities they have set up in the kids section.
But the coolest part about it, of course, was the fact that when there I found something I'd lost a long time ago. And perhaps it might explain why I've had the book "Throwing 7's" in the right-nav pane of my blog for about 6 months now.

I'd started to mention this months ago and then dropped the subject, but I'd been pursuing a series of books by Denis Hamill for a long time. I bought his first book 3 Quarters in the early 90's when I was living in Ottawa and working at Prospero Books in Carlingwood Shopping Centre. But I never read it, and the book remained lost in a box in our basement (or closet, etc) as we moved around, and when I was setting up our basement "library" that I found it again. I read it, and loved it. Shortly after, I looked for the sequel Throwing 7's but couldn't find it in stores and so ordered it online. I was enjoying it, was halfway through it, and ended up leaving it by accident on the GO Train one day. Since then, I bought the third book in the series, Ten Spot but didn't want to read it until I'd finished the 2nd in the series.

But I came home with a copy of Throwing 7's from the library today. Woo hoo! Just evidence that for the Terryberry Library and I, this could be the start of some kind of wonderful.

The other exciting thing about the library visit was finding that the Hamilton Library currently has three copies of my book One Hand Screaming. Since they're all in stock at the central location, I thought I should at least donate a copy to my local branch.


Lance said...

Mark, a Father's heart and the rediscovery of a joy of youth with your son is a great thing. I am not a Father and there are few men who write about being a Father that make me smile, this post is one of them.

Kimberly said...

there's another piece of shameless self promotion...and what better way than at the library. I have always loved the library (I'm a big nerd that way) and used to spend hours wandering around, looking at books, picking out the ones I wanted to borrow. I usually meander down to the Central Location downtown, just cause a multi floor library is so awesome...

You should take Alexander down there some weekend, their kid's section is HUGE!!! with interactive computers as well as all the books..

lime said...

wonderful! as a lover of books, children's lit, a teacher and an aspiring children's librarian i cannot encourage you enough to keep this up as part of boy's day out. i am betting they have some terrific children's programs available too. i loved going to the library as a kid and loved taking my own kids there when they were smaller.

Franny said...

We'll probably run into each other there. Me & the kiddles hang out at TB all the time - we do the storytime circuit as well.

Hot tip for you - the library in Ancaster (on Wilson Street) has the BEST children's section. Especially if Alexander is like my kids - very, ahem, *active*. You will understand soon, my young paduan...

Pete Mitchell said...

Yeah, take Alexander to the Ancaster library on Wilson Street. The librarians are fantastic there!

And Central Library is a little too big for him right now and I don't like the thought of him going to downtown Hamilton cuz there are way too many weirdos down there now.