Two Mondays ago patrons were waiting outside before 1:00 p.m. for us to open. It was hot. Instead of standing under the shade of the trees on the walk, people were waiting on the steps by the front doors where the heat was radiating off the marble. It was definitely summer.
Most Mondays are like this, unless it's in the middle of the winter and there is a raging blizzard. Then people who are waiting for us to open sit in their cars. People come early throughout the morning every Monday, despite the fact we have only opened for half a day for several years, and didn't open on Mondays at all for several years before that. They yank on the door, pause, yank again, then read the hours posted before leaving to do something else. But the patrons who come every Monday know when we open and they wait by the door, almost as though it's a race and the first person in wins a prize.
The moment we opened the doors on this particular Monday, half a dozen people streamed in. I thought, "It will settle down now, they are all in." It didn't. With hardly enough time to sign up one person on the Internet and start checking in DVDs, more people started following each other inside. About that time I had to help a gentleman determine what kind of book he wanted to read and where to find it. We were just going through the process when I spotted a dog.
It was a medium sized brown short haired dog with perky ears and a collar and tags. It was trotting past the desk, looking around and headed for the back of the building.
I said, "Whose dog is that?"
Of the dozen or so people standing in line or milling around up front, not one claimed the dog. They looked at it and didn't seem to be disturbed. But I was facing a dilemma. Did I desert my patron and race after the dog (we have a 'no pets' policy that certainly covered a visiting dog sans owner), or did I zip through the interview and then go after the dog? I glanced around. Everyone was going about their business, apparently uninterested in the fact that we had a dog inspecting the premises. So I did my best to compress 4 minutes of chat and questions into thirty seconds and headed to the back with the patron in tow where I expected to find the dog as well.
But I didn't spot it. I showed the patron the shelves that might interest him and walked back to the front of the building.
"Where's the dog?" I asked the people still up front. A boy said, "Maybe he went upstairs."
Really? Seriously? Of course the dog probably went upstairs. Just what I needed, a major hunt for a dog on two floors with two staircases for the dog to go up and down while patrons were waiting for service and the only other staff person was getting overwhelmed. It was time to make another choice. Spend who knew how long hunting all over the building for the dog or help the next person waiting for service? Just as I was in the middle of running a fax and listening anxiously for a shriek or bark, the dog came trotting silently into view, still apparently interested in his surroundings.
I had pushed my luck far enough and was about to drop everything when a young man called the dog to him, and headed to the front doors. (I silently blessed him for the help.) The dog came willingly, meeting a woman and two girls as they were coming in the library. There was a mild pile up, then the young man called the dog to the other side of the vestibule and escorted him outside.
And that was that. A strange dog had noticed the people piling in the door, followed them in to see what it was all about, seen the sights (except for those on the second floor), and left the building. And all the human patrons didn't seem to see anything much out of the ordinary about it.
It's at times like these that I love this library and its patrons. Including the one on four legs.
- Crafts With Nikkie, a new children's program, will be held on Thursday, August 17th at 4:00 p.m. in the meeting room. Come and make a beaded necklace!
- The library has a new AWE Literacy Station geared for children aged 2 to 8 years old. (See post.)
- Book signing for author of "The Adventures of Stinkerpup" Isis Grayling on Saturday, June 3, from 2 - 4 p.m.
- Summer Story Hour "Make A Better World" is coming! Beginning Wednesday, June 14th, this seven week program will continue every Wednesday from 10 - 11 a.m. through July 26th. (See post.)
- The Arthur Johnson Memorial Library Board will hold their next meeting on Tuesday, May 16, 2017, at 5:30 p.m. in the meeting room at the library.
- Are you interested in joining a new Writer's Group? Meetings held on Fridays, at 10:00 a.m. This is for any writer who wishes to meet with other writers. Beginners, experienced, published, unpublished, writers of fiction, non-fiction, memoirs, bloggers - all are welcome.
- Preschool Story Hour is conducted every Wednesday morning at 10:00 a.m. We read books to the children and there is a project every week. It's never too soon to introduce your children to the library!
- Schedule a meeting at the library. Call 445-9711 to get on the calendar in advance. The library stays open until 6:00 P.M., Monday - Saturday, except for Thursday, when it stays open until 9:00 P.M.