It happened a bit more than a week ago when I received some very joyous news that area libraries, including my local book depository in Lake Mills, would be offering curbside pick-up. I admit I’ve adapted pretty well to Safer at Home, likely because I’m the type of person who enjoys staying at home with a good book or movie as much as going to a concert or spending a night out with friends. But the one thing missing since mid-March has been access to new books.
I love to read, but it can get to be an expensive habit especially because I don’t use a digital device to consume books so actually buying a new novel costs more than $20. Given the current economic situation, I don’t really have a lot of spare cash on me. Plus, if I buy a book and I don’t like it, I feel bad that I spent my money on it. The library gives me access to countless books and I don’t have to pay to read them. (I do rack up overdue fees though, but it’s never been more than $10 in a given year.) If I don’t particularly like the book, it just goes back to the library.
As someone who puts holds on books, I love to look at my list of holds and see myself move from number 83 to 1 on the waitlist. Before Safer at Home, I had the top spot for a book being released in April. This was a big deal to me. And then we all know what happened.
So far, I’ve been able to pick up a book and DVD from the L.D. Fargo Library. Not the one I was at the top of the list for, but a book I hadn’t had time to read yet.
I’ve been trying to remind myself that there are still good things happening, even if it’s a small victory like the library providing some services.
For instance, there was the excitement of having packages arrive earlier than expected. I’d ordered some gifts for my sister’s baby shower and received the message that there was an issue with the original route the box was being shipped along. The delivery date had been set for last Thursday, so I assumed it would be delayed a day or two. Instead, to some UPS miracle, the gifts actually arrived Wednesday. How often does a re-routed package end up arriving earlier than expected?
And I know each day, I’ll be sent a Snapchat from my friend who lives outside Poynette — nothing special about these messages but I’m pretty sure both of us would lose it if we didn’t have regular contact with anyone outside of the people we see on a regular basis. She’s also the person who shared with me and other friends in our book club her secret grocery store that is usually pretty empty of people and well stocked on the necessities.
I’ve even found some simple joys in things like eating cold Spaghetti-Os right out of the can, finding an eight-pack of toilet paper on the shelves, discovering the federal stimulus money has been deposited in my bank account, and finally getting to open my apartment windows to let in fresh air.
I’m guessing more of us are finding ways to appreciate the little things; on Saturday evening when I looked out my window and saw the sky was filled with shades of pink and purple. I decided I needed to go to the beach and get pictures of the sunset. It seems sunsets have now become a source of entertainment because once I arrived at the beach, there were maybe 20 other people already there. The last time I went to the beach to get pictures of the sunset, there were maybe three teenagers there and I’m not entirely sure they were there to appreciate the sunset.
I have no idea when I’ll be able to obtain books through inter-library loan or be able to socially gather with more than 10 people who I don’t have regular contact with. So for now, I’m just going to the content with the little joys that can be found in life.