Today is Save Libraries day so I thought it was a good time for me to write about why I think libraries are important. I can’t make it to any of the organised events because today is also my brother’s wedding, but I thought I could still take part by blogging. If I get a spare minute I’ll probably tweet a couple of #savelibraries thoughts. CILIP have a whole list of suggestions for ways you can get involved even if you can’t make it to one of the many organised events today.
I still remember clearly my visits to our local library when I was a child. To me it was a completely magical place, for two main reasons. The first is the obvious reason, I was a bookworm from as soon as I could read, and the idea that there was this building filled with books and they would let me borrow them to read was my childlike idea of heaven. To be perfectly honest it’s still pretty close! The other thing I found magical was watching the librarians at work. These were the days of each library book having a cardboard ticket, these were removed from the books when you borrowed them and placed in your little cardboard holder. Watching the librarian rapidly flick through all of the holders to find yours seemed like a special sort of magic to me – I made tickets and holders for every book I owned, hoping to recreate my very own library.
Today I still love libraries. I love that when you walk through the doors you are taking the first steps in being transported to somewhere else, and it doesn’t cost you anything to get there. I love that whether you want to escape into a fantasy world filled with dragons and elves, or to explore the ancient pyramids the library will help you to get there. There is no question that I haven’t been able to answer by using the library, either investigating by myself or getting help from one of the librarians.
When I had to make the decision just over a year ago to have a career change as soon as I started thinking about what else I might like to do I thought about becoming a librarian. All these months on and I’m starting the second semester of my first year at Aberystwyth studying for a degree in Information and Library Studies. Already I’ve been delighted to find out how much more there is to the world of libraries than the young me had ever dared to think. I’m excited about the profession I’ve chosen to join and I’m already excited about the role I will be able to play once I graduate. I look forward to becoming the tour guide and helping others on the journeys they enter the libraries to take.