Sunday, January 22, 2012

Field Trip Friday-Episode #5-Books, Buds and (Angela) Jean

For this week's FTF, the kids and I packed up, hit the road, and headed southwest to visit the newly revitalized St.Thomas Public Library.

My Mom has worked at the STPL for as long as I can remember....more than 30 years! When I was little, she worked in the Film Department. It was the coolest place. I remember the large reels of film, all in metal cannisters, stored on the shelves. I remember the giant, heavy film projectors, and watching my Mom thread the film through them. I remember one of my sister's birthday parties, when my Mom brought a projector home so we could watch a movie on our wall. We were all very impressed! I believe there is even a story about a day in elementary school, when on the last day of school the teachers brought all of the kids into the gymnasium to watch a movie from the Library. It was a rare and special occasion. Teachers couldn't figure out how to thread the filmstrip through the machine. They fiddled and fiddled, and apparently I got up from my seat, walked up to the projector and did it for them. I don't remember the incident, but I remember the story...

The film department is now long gone. The films were replaced first by VHS tapes, and are now DVDs.

As a kid, I spent a great deal of time at the library, especially in the summers. The Children's Department set up summer reading programs with a different theme each year. The idea was that you would read a book, come in and tell one of the librarians about it, and you then get some sort of prize or reward. We loved it.

I'm sure that having a Mom who worked at the Library was a catalyst for me becoming the book-lover I am today. I recall my Mom bringing home bags and bags of books for us. We always had something to read.

This past year, the STPL has undergone a complete renovation. For the last several months, all of the books, videos and materials were moved out, and the library departments were housed in empty storefronts in the local shopping mall. We visited the temporary digs during the summer..
The renovation work was completed in December, and for the last several weeks the library staff has been busy moving all of the books and furniture back into the building and getting everything set up. It was a huge undertaking, but this past week, the doors opened to the public.
I was relieved to see that everyone's favourite statue is still there!

As with all renovations, there are still a few operational kinks to be worked out, but the new space is beautiful. It's bright, and fresh and calming. The Children's Department has been moved to the lower level and the kids and I spent most of our time down there. We toured the stacks and read some books together.
I do not recommend you hire this moving company. Their furniture handling practices sound quite scandalous.

After our visit, we headed back to Beppe and Nonno's house for lunch.
if you knew how much Nonno loves pasta, you could appreciate the irony
cavatelli and meatballs

a blend of Canadian, Italian and Dutch cheeses! How apropos!
As fortune would have it, it was a PA day for the schools in St. Thomas, so we were treated to a bonus visit with the cousins.
After lunch, we headed back out on the road. A quick visit, but a fun one!
As we left, we couldn't help but notice the buds on Nonno's magnolia.
 It may be the dead of winter, but the promise of spring is there if you look.

1 comment:

  1. I enjoyed your 'cheesy' metaphor. It reminds me - I just found a printout of the lyrics for the Wedding Hoedown we performed at your reception. Do you have a copy?