I’ve had my Little Free Library for nearly 7 months now, and I have to say it has been one of the most rewarding things I have ever done. When I see someone standing in front of it and gazing at the books like a kid in a candy store, it makes me smile. When someone takes a book or adds a book to the collection, I’m thrilled.
I’m a member of a Facebook group called Little Free Library Stewards, and I’ve heard a lot of heartwarming stories there, too. Unfortunately, I’ve also heard some horror stories. Vandalism. People taking out every single book and leaving the library empty. People filling the library with hate speech or adding books like Mein Kampf. Angry notes that say that this library should be taken down because it reduces patronage to public libraries. (Huh?)
Fortunately, the only bad experience I’ve had so far is someone making off with the log book. I promptly replaced it with another log book that is chained to the library, and I haven’t had any problems since then. And it’s a good thing, too, because the log book is my favorite part of this whole experience.
I’ve gotten so many gratifying comments in the log book. One gentleman from the local Sikh community blessed me for having this library, and asked that I add more fairy tales to the collection, as English is not his first language, and fairy tales are easier to read for him. (I’ve done so.) I’ve gotten some very enthusiastic comments from children who enjoy telling me the books they’ve borrowed and the books they’ve donated. A mother of small children said that she’s had the opportunity to read some great bedtime stories because of this library. A homeless woman thanked me, because she says she loves to read but has a hard time accessing books. All of these comments never fail to bring tears of joy to my eyes.
One of my favorite little commenters at present is Sydnee. She leaves comments like:
Thank you for this little library! I took The Puppy Place. I am excited to read it. Thank you. I look forward to bringing the book back. Love, Sydnee
Thank you. I got Dear Dumb Diary and I gave a book to you. Princess Posey. Love, Sydnee
Hi, I am Sydnee and I took A Wrinkle In Time. I can’t wait to read it. So excited. Love, Sydnee
I love knowing that she’s been back more than once. Her last comment prompted me to respond:
I hope you liked it, Sydnee! It was one of my favorites. – Barb
I don’t know if she has seen the comment yet, but I hope so!
All of this wonderful community contact has inspired me to start yet another Facebook group called Clark Lake Park Little Free Library. Everyone is welcome to join! I’d love to make this library a true community effort.
As the title post says, this little free library is warming the wintry cockles of my bookish heart. (Thanks to a fellow little free library steward for that wonderfully expressive title. Hi Bilby!)
Read any good books lately? Try mine! http://amzn.to/2mlPVh5