Posted tagged ‘Bolgatanga library’

“What in the world would we do without our libraries?”

September 11, 2018

I am a character in a science fiction novel having to adjust to a wet, sunless world, and I am not adjusting well. It is a cloudy, hot and humid day already in the 70’s. It rained this morning.

A library, any library, is a favorite place. When I was a kid, I walked uptown to the library once a week in the summer and every couple of weeks in the winter. The library always felt cool in the summer even without air conditioning. The chairs and tables were wooden. They were captain’s chairs, the ones with spindles in the back and wooden arm rests. The shelves were up high and down low. The mysteries and science fiction books were on high shelves. It took a while until I was tall enough to reach the top shelves.

The library at my college was new. It had smoking rooms on each floor. Serious students stayed on the bottom floor where it was quiet. My friends and I went to the top most floor and took over tables in the corner. We weren’t quiet. During exam times, I sat at an individual carrel. I spent many afternoons and evenings at that library but seldom for reading, almost always for studying.

In Bolgatanga, the library was also brand new. The architect was J Max Bond Jr who lived in Ghana for a while in the 60’s. The library was designed with an umbrella shaped roof to keep the building well ventilated and cool, a necessity in Bolga. I was a frequent visitor to the library. Books were essential to me. I had so much down time I needed something to fill the void. I coached volley ball and taught adult ed in town, but it wasn’t enough. I had a Peace Corps book locker, but I went through that in a short time. The library was a godsend.

My local library was an old captain’s house. It’s tiny, but I never have difficulty finding books to read. I go every couple of weeks to browse the shelves. I used to buy new books as soon as a favorite author published one, but now I borrow though I haven’t completely given up buying. I sometimes read all day. At night I’ll read until 2 or 3 in the morning. The time passes so quickly I am aways surprised at how late it is.

Right now I am still reading the Patterson/Clinton book and have two more in the wings. Today is a perfect day to read.

In case you were wondering, I did my laundry yesterday.