By Mary Tucker
June 14, 2008:
It’s Flag Day, my day to be substitute librarian at the Andes Public Library from 10:00 am ‘til noon. After picking up the key to open, I have trouble getting the key into the lock and wiggle, jiggle until the key turns, but the door won’t open so I relock and unlock again; still can’t get the door to open. Then I recall that the door swings out instead of in, the same problem as the last time I opened in March. I take the books from the Return Book Box on the porch, enter the library, turn on lights, put out the open sign and I’m all set to start.
On the dot of ten, Senator Bonacic drops off flag posters, one to display outside and some to pass out to library patrons to display at their homes. Next a man comes in looking for VCRs and DVDs to download on his IPod so he can use them on an overseas flight. After helping him I open desk drawers looking for a blank sheet of paper and find the directions for library substitutes. Uh-oh, I’ve already made a mistake by signing out videos for 2 weeks instead of one. Next a book used for the Book Club Discussion Group was returned. The book was obtained through the Four County Library System. Library patrons can order and reserve books not on our shelves from the Four County Library System (pick up printed instructions from the librarian.)
Another oops–somehow I mess up the stamp so the wrong due date comes up. It takes at least five minutes of trial and error to get the June 28 due date back. Someone came in to use a computer and printer; the computer is ok but the printer is not working for the moment; can not help her out as I am a computer “dummy”. She wants to sign out a book with no card in it. She tells me her name is on the register and the book can be signed out that way. I don’t know anything about a register so I make a paper card while she picks out books from the book sale table. The library staff is flexible and tries to make signing out books easy for patrons.
The rest of the time is routine, signing out books, taking returned books, answering phone, giving directions…. During the quiet times, I catch up on things that have to be done and have time to look at new books ready to be shelved along with several boxes of books not ready for shelving. What a variety to choose from: self help books, childrens’ books, books on art and music, poetry, novels, historical fiction, biographies, autobiographies and more. Truly there is something for everyone. As a well known department store ad proclaims “IT’S ALL INSIDE” at the Andes Public Library. ~