Vickie from Pittsboro Mississippi

The chance to visit the frozen tundra of Alaska, a trip across the Yucatan peninsula, a cruise to the Bahamas, or even a romantic excursion through Paris are only a few of the exotic destinations available to me for free at my local library.  For this reason I have always considered the library an integral part of any community.  It is so important that we are introduced to and learn an appreciation for our school and public libraries as early as possible.

On a cold rainy afternoon, there is nothing more soothing, to the mind and soul than to wrap up in a warm fuzzy blanket in front of a fire with a fresh pot of coffee and a book that will take me to any exotic location that I wish to travel.  

As a young girl growing up in rural Mississippi, I learned that many of the journeys that I would take would be through my imagination.  I enjoyed a very happy childhood, but my Dad worked long and hard in a furniture factory. I had three brothers and one sister so there was not a lot of money to spend on fancy vacations.  I learned that if I went to the library at school I could visit anywhere in the world by simply checking out a book and reading about it.  My first favorites were the Cherry Ames Student Nurse books. 

When I was older, my dad bought a country store and I worked there during the summer.  A bookmobile would come by once every two weeks and I continued to read.  I think it may have been this love of reading that lead me to my decision to become a teacher.  I wanted all the children to understand that even if circumstances prevented them from travel they still possessed the opportunity to see and learn from the books available to them through their school or public library.

The best way to instill a love of reading is to read to our children and allow our children to see us read for enjoyment. I read books to my children when they were babies in my lap as I rocked them to sleep.  I started taking my children to the library as soon as they were able to toddle around and allowed them to pick books themselves.

As I have grown older, I still appreciate the opportunity to slow down and take one of my infamous trips to the mountains or to solve a murder mystery before going to sleep in my own bed for a peaceful nights rest. 

I am thankful that I have access to a wonderful small town library in my town and that the librarians are helpful and friendly.  They make my experience at the library enjoyable and are helpful in helping me to locate books by authors that I like and books about topics that are interesting to me.

I think today I would like to go to the mountains, but first I need to stop at the library.