By Susan Dromey Heeter
Everyone should have a refuge – that place they go for peace, for solace, for comfort. For some it’s a church, for others, the woods. My husband finds complete Zen in his kayak out on the water.
For me, it is and always has been one and only one place: the library.
It doesn’t matter what library – any will do. I’m happy with any venue filled with books, with ideas, with a certain hush. These days I’m devoted to the Dover Public Library but I’ll head to the libraries of UNH or Dover High School if those create more convenience in my life.
I love perusing magazines, utilizing resources, correcting papers, writing notes. I feel productive in a library. I can get anything done. A library’s energy exudes productivity – not in any rushed sense, rather, in a quiet, positively intentioned mode.
And I always feel heard in a library. People are entirely helpful, eager to find solutions, answers. In truth, there are not many places that create that sense – without a price attached. I love that a library has no entrance fee, no price tag, no membership fee. Libraries are gloriously free, fantastically open. I am grateful my taxes go toward the upkeep and creation of libraries. They are very special places.
When I was growing up, Friday nights in Springfield’s Forest Park meant a trip to the Forest Park Public Library with my Dad. I still remember the colorful yellow stools, the books at my eye level. And I could take out as many books as I wanted – like an all you can eat buffet for the mind.
My friend, Joan, and I would stop on our way home from school to this same library; our sixth grade year saw us take a book out on sign language. We wanted to talk in class but knew we’d get in trouble if we were heard. So, we sat at the library, learned how to sign the alphabet and spent a few years giggling and speaking in, what we though, was our own code.
I still remember how to sign the alphabet and use those signs to teach my students the Spanish alphabet. Thank you, Forest Park Library, your legacy continues.
As I muse joyfully on libraries, I invite you to visit yours. Or, if you are in town, do come to the Dover Public Library’s Book Sale to benefit this lovely locale, this stellar venue. The sale begins October 29.
Library. Book Sale. October. Such lovely words to muse joyfully upon. Stay well, my readers, and may your refuge be as lovely as mine…
Susan Dromey Heeter, a writer from Dover, recently let her hair go au natural white. Besides writing Joyful Musings for InDepthNH.org. Dromey Heeter is a secondary Spanish Teacher at Dover High School and the mother of two teenage daughters. Writing has been her passion since her English majoring days at the University of Massachusetts in Amherst. Dromey Heeter has lived in The Netherlands, Alaska and currently basks in all things New England, including the frigid winters. An avid swimmer, Dromey Heeter’s great passion is to bring back body surfing as most children have no idea how to ride waves without ridiculous boogie boards. She also writes about thrift shopping and all things frugal in a column called “Budget Vogue” for the New Hampshire Union Leader.