Who Else Misses Libraries and Bookstores?

Ryan (age 3) and I reading at the library.

I was thinking about the things I miss because of this coronavirus pandemic and the shutdown of the world as we knew it. 

I miss being able to hug and kiss my parents.

I miss stepping into a grocery store without fear. (And I miss finding eggs and toilet paper on the shelves.)

I miss public libraries. 

I miss bookstores.

Because shopping for books online just isn’t the same.

My son received several gift cards for his recent birthday. (On a side note, Ryan is such a trooper. He celebrated his 12th birthday at home, with the largest chocolate cake we’ve ever had for the 3 of us, and promises of a major “do-over” when all this is done.)

He’s shopped for books on amazon.com and barnesandnoble.com. 

But it’s not the same.

I miss browsing. Wandering the aisles, discovering a book I didn’t know I’d want to read. 

And you just can’t do that online. 

During the shutdown, our reading habits haven’t changed. I’m reading library books that I had checked out before they were closed down. I’m re-reading books from my personal library, some of which I don’t remember having read the first time. It is during this re-read, that I make a decision to either keep the book or donate it (when the libraries re-open).

And Ryan?

He’s reading everything. Maybe that’s a bit of an exaggeration, but it certainly feels that way. (Often we read together, during the day, and always at bedtime.) In the last month, we have read a fictional book about a zombie apocalypse (and he ordered a few more in the series). We have read inspiring biographies on people who make me proud to be a member of the human race – people like former President Barack Obama, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., former First Lady Michelle Obama, and Rosa Parks.

What about you readers?

What are you missing?

And, what are you reading? Feel free to share in the comments section.

 

Summer Reading

A photo taken a few months ago showing Ryan and I browsing at the library.

We’re coming to the end of summer break.  In our family that means school resumes next week, as does afternoon homework and a note packed into my son’s lunchbox each day.

Our summers usually consist of:  one family trip (we were in Santa Barbara and Cambria this year); numerous museum visits (including LACMA, the La Brea Tar Pits and Museum, the Natural History Museum, the California Science Center, the Norton Simon Museum, the Getty Center, and the Skirball Cultural Center); and lots of reading.

My ten-year-old son just completed the reading log required for the public library’s summer reading program.  We never tell Ryan what to read, or insist he sit down and read each day.  He just reads.  Sometimes alone, sometimes together — on our patio, on our couch, at our local Coffee Bean.

And looking over his list of books makes me smile.  Ryan read about LeBron James and King Tut.  He read joke books and books based on Pixar films.  He read about Katherine Johnson and Buzz Aldrin.  He read about Michael Jackson and Stevie Wonder.  He read about Nintendo’s Mario and Curious George.

It’s been a good summer.