Vacation week

While I’m not on vacation this week, the children in town are, and it gives a whole different rhythm to life at the library, a rhythm that is fun and refreshing.  With that in mind, here’s vacation week in review:

Patriot’s Day!  After writing such a long post on Patriot’s Day last year, I’ll keep this year’s comments brief.  Jim and I went to the dawn salute on Buttrick’s Hill on Sunday morning; it was a perfect morning, with mist rising from the field by the Old North Bridge as the sun rose in a clear sky.  The ceremony progressed as usual, except as we heard Dr. Prescott thundering across the Old North Bridge on his horse:  Clop, clop, clop – “The Regulars are on the March!” – clop, clop, clop – “The Regulars are on the March!” – clop, clop, thunk…  >silence<  Shuffle, skitter, shuffle, shuffle, hesitant clop…clop….clop….clop…

Turns out the horse slipped on the downhill side of the damp bridge, and sat down on his rear end.  We heard “Dr. Prescott” talking to someone about it afterwards, and he said the horse was just fine.  But at the moment it happened, we all held our breath.

That was Sunday – on Monday Dad and I attended the parade in Concord together, and had a lovely time, capped off by lunch at the Colonial Inn. 

Fancy Nancy  On Tuesday, the town’s Senior Girl Scout Troop hosted two consecutive Fancy Nancy storytimes and parties.  They had an enthusiastic crowd, and I was sad to have to leave just as the first one was starting (though I’d already worked a 9 hour day at that point, and really needed to go home and eat some dinner).

T. A. Barron  And the highlight of this vacation week was a visit from author T. A. Barron.  Maureen from the region organized this program, which was aimed at library professionals, and she and T. A. agreed that the library in which I work was an ideal spot for the program, since T. A. lived in the town in which I work through his fifth grade year.  (Apologies for the awkward language, but I do try to keep the town and library anonymous here.)  

T. A. is the nicest, most generous author I’ve ever had the pleasure of meeting, and his devotion to children and encouragement of the hero in each child is inspiring.  He gave each librarian in attendance a packet with a DVD about the children who have won the Gloria Barron Prize for Young Heroes, along with a copy of his book The Hero’s Trail.  His only request of us was that we share these with as many children as possible.  With that in mind, I’ll be putting the DVD into the circulating collection, and I’ll be using the book with one of my book groups (either the fifth or the sixth grade group, with the intention that it becomes an annual book choice for that age).

Beyond the Barron Prize, here is an example of T. A.’s generosity:  while in conversation with another librarian, he realized she hadn’t read one of his books, so he bought her a copy from the stack for sale from Barnes and Noble.  And then, when I came up with my two books to be signed, he saw that I had the first and third books in the Great Tree of Avalon series, but not the second (a product of my having bought them used at the Barrow Book Store, of course).  “You don’t have the second book,” he said to me, with some concern.  Looking over at the stack for sale, he saw that there weren’t any hardcover editions of the book there, so I wouldn’t be able to have a matching set.  “Tell you what,” he said, “Write down your mailing address, and when I get back to Colorado I’ll send you a signed copy of the second book in hardcover.”  Wow – that’s a nice man. 

So that’s the week in review, minus all the million little things I did that don’t normally happen when storytimes and school are in session:  cleaned the office, read a lot of book reviews, thought about the summer reading program…you get the idea.  It’s been a good week, and a refreshing change of pace.

One thought on “Vacation week”

  1. I love it when writers are decent and generous! Neil Gaiman was like that too when we saw him last month. Signing books for three hours!!! And sweet and funny and kind to every single person who stepped up with a stack of books to be signed.

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