Old People = Old Books

Remember all those books that you promised yourself you would read one day when you had time? Well, I just found a whole stash, an entire room-full. In the library of the retirement home. Shelves and shelves of books standing patiently waiting to be read. All neatly cataloged, sorted, cleaned and placed in strict alphabetical order. A book lover’s treasure house – as exciting as an old-fashioned secondhand bookshop.

Either the residents bring their book collections with them when they move in, or perhaps people dump boxes of unwanted books on the doorstep, who knows? Every book probably has its own story, and every one is available for reading. You choose a book, write the details on a sheet of paper in a ring binder with the date and when you return it you sign it back in.

There are some great old books there. Not necessarily the classics (to which I have unfulfilled promises as well) but best-sellers of bygone years when I was too busy working to read; books that made history, books that became legends and changed the way we think, books that won Nobel and other prizes, books that were made into great movies, titles that were in the newspapers and on everyone’s lips. There are whole collections of books by authors standing on the shelves and each one is in good condition. Whoever looks after this library knows what she is doing.

Along the front wall are 3 computers for anyone to use and there are some impressive watercolor paintings hanging on the walls. Interesting too is that even when there are people in the room, they whisper when talking to each other, just like the libraries of my youth.