It’s no secret that I love libraries. The bigger they are the better. Some people tell me they’ve got lost in a library. I find it hard to believe, a library is perhaps one of the most organised spaces I know, finding your way back could never be easier. There’s a language spoken in the silence of a library that isn’t heard, it can only be read.
I sit here looking at the road outside the library window, and this silence allows me to think. I study with music but I need the silence to hear it. It was a tough week, lots to do, and now I’ve found my rhythm and things are going swiftly. It’s all about doing and time management hasn’t been easier. I spend half a day at the library and the other half with my mother. It does feel like home.
The nervousness has morphed into excitement and my fingers have warmed up ready to fly across the keyboard. To think that in a couple of months I’ll be done with this degree is so strange. It’s a short time. It seems long on paper but not otherwise. I’ve found my spot in the library and I’ve found my corner just like at home.
I am free most of the week which gives me time to work and read. Next week my Mum will be gone and I will truly be alone once more. But I know I am ready now. This next phase of my life will be defining and I can feel it. We tend to underestimate how we feel about our daily lives but it’s also something we try not to think about because it puts us in doubt.
I’m perpetually busy here, and the loneliness is peaceful, I need it to work. I wondered why I wasn’t feeling up to work at home moving sluggishly. It was the environment. You can tell the difference between developed and developing countries when you sit at a university library. The books aren’t falling apart with thick layers of dust covering them. Everything is electronic, the librarian isn’t a solitary human being fighting sleep.
The books look happy here. Even books can look tired. The shelves aren’t rusting and the study tables aren’t there for show. Every corner of the library is used and serves a purpose. A library back home is a dark place that seems dilapidated and uninviting, it seems suspicious. Here the library is a busy, respected place, sacred. People back home tell me it’s because of technology, who’d go to a library, technology overtook print. If only they looked at these libraries.
It’s about money and interest not so much about digital versus print. People bring their laptops here to read, the library has a host of electronic material. They have multiple machines that not only copy, print and scan but they’ll staple your sheets too. Somebody cares enough about the library to update it, to make it user-friendly, to adapt to the times. It’s about infrastructure.
The library is made by its readers and the writers. It’s not all bleak, but this is about becoming better and you can only do that if you take stock of what’s not up to the mark. Work piles up and I am not intimidated because for the first time I believe I can do it and that’s because I am in my place of comfort where I am surrounded by what I love.
I draw motivation from this library, where books live and breathe, where their solidity protects you and reassures you. A place that truly believes in the mind and where thoughts come to rest. There is power here and it reaches you. I may be coming here just to work, but my mind finds peace here. No matter how I am feeling here it’s ok.
I thought my words were stolen from me last week and I came here to find them. I found them here. All I had to do was walk between stacks following the language of the library. Perhaps I’ll be here until my own mind finds its own words. It’s these darned words, these words that evade you when you need them the most.