How wonderful to live in a period of time where you can be anywhere in the world and still use your local library. Even better when you spend 10-11 months of the year abroad with a 10 year old boy who loves stories.
Whenever I’m home in Australia visiting my local library is something I look forward to as much as the yummy dairy produce and a proper salad sandwich. But for the past year I’ve really started using the online services offered by my libraries while I’m away (yes I’m a member of four different libraries in two Australian states ).
My adopted son Jerry loves stories and as his literacy increases, is more and more interested in reading. Over the past few weeks I’ve started borrowing books for him too.
Now he’s been drifting off to sleep listening to the sounds of a fabulous audiobook of Colin Thiele’s Storm Boy. Or he’s reading the eBook version (complete with cartoon illustrations) of The No-Good Nine — via iPhone while sitting in the doctor’s waiting room for his tuberculosis checkup. Or travelling the four hour bus ride back to Estancia to visit his brothers, while I’m listening to the Bolinda audio version of Blueback by Tim Winton, Jerry’s got his headphones around something from the junior fiction section. And it’s completely free.
Having access to a well stocked library and online facilities (all for free) is something I have taken for granted for a long time, and living now 10-11 months of the year in a developing country, I appreciate Australia like I never have before. So online libraries, eBooks and audiobooks, you people who write or dictate them, you library staff who catalogue them and reset our passwords (even when we’re calling from overseas) — you’re all in mine (and Jerry’s) gratitude prayers tonight.
© 2019 Melinda J. Irvine