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Having been stuck at 39 ops for so long and not finding anything I was sufficiently enamoured with, or hated enough to find worthy of an opinion, I was in despair.Wracked my brains, till the lightbulb flashed and I thought of my one true love.
I love books. Have done for as long as I can remember and am one of those saddos who get really excited by the prospect of entering a bookshop, like a kid in a sweetshop. Books from floor to ceiling is my idea of heaven and I think my dream job would be as a librarian, where I could caress books all day long.Then again, having looked at the librarians in our local library, I don't think I'm ideal material, being neither twinset and pearls or reluctant hippy, which are the two categories ours fall into.
If you are wondering if I'm ever going to get to the point, I want to sing the praises of public libraries.As their name suggests, they are for everyone. Have even had to step over a comatose drunk in the doorway on one occasion. Don't think he was overcome by the joy of the written word, more a handy, sheltered, crashing point to sleep off the excesses of a Friday night binge.
Must admit, I was rather concerned by his prone state, unlike the library staff who seemed content to walk round/step over him. They are probably more used to seeing this sort of thing than I but I took it upon myself to call for an ambulance and have him hospitalised. Probably wouldn't thank me for it when he came to, but at least it cleared the entrance for all us book devotees.If you are a council tax (rates, or whatever it calls itself these days)payer and have a permanent address, you can join the library and actually get to borrow books.
Ours allows a maximum lend of eight items at a time. I dont know whether this is standard or varies from library to library.You can borrow a combination of books, videos, dvds, cds and my very favourite, talking books.
Books are loaned free of charge and you get them for three weeks. If you fail to return them on the due date you have to pay a fine unless you are an OAP. Suppose they make allowances for older people being more forgetful but unfortunately haven't reached my golden years yet, so still have to pay if I'm late with my returns. Have never been really late and mostly have to pay the odd 10p or so.Videos and dvds will cost you £1.50 for a week's loan. CD's and cassettes are charged at 80p for three week's listening.
Our library seems to have some up to date titles on offer. However if you don't see what you want, you can ask an assistant to look on the computer, and if it can be obtained (they themselves borrow from other libraries, to get you what you want) they will seek it out for you. A fee of 80p is charged for reserving items, be it book, dvd, whatever.If you reserve three items, you only pay for two. Even libraries are getting in on the act and tempting us to get more than we need. Who can resist the offer of an extra item, free of charge. I know I cant.
If you happen to have a handy small child you can borrow, they too can have their own library card and benefit from not having to pay for their loans.
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