I bet you thought I was going to talk about my kids, well I am, but it’s the 900 that I see every day in my library. Over the last four years, I have entertained my husband with some funny stories involving some of the kids at school. Some incidents repeat continuously, but they never diminish in humorous entertainment and then there’s the one.
In my first year at the elementary school I had sent out overdue notices and a 1st grade teacher sent a student to the library for me to explain what I wanted. I don’t know why she couldn’t explain it, possibly coming from the librarian would have more of an impact never the less the little guy came in and stood in front of my desk. I explained he needed to bring the book back or he couldn’t check out another one until he did. Two big crocodile tears formed and slowly slid down his face.
I told him it was okay, and there was no reason to cry. He wailed, “I can never go home?” I was dumbfounded. Where in the world did he come up with that? I reassured him that was not the case; he sniffled a few times, said okay and walked out the door. The next time he came to the library he swaggered in and gave me a wave as if that incident never happened. Sad to say, today he returned his books because it was his last day. I will miss him.
I’ve looked several times, but have yet to find the spring that’s embedded in the floor in front of my computer. I know it’s there because no matter the age, they all seem to find it. As they sedately walk along the counter scooting their books across the top they find the spring and then boing…boing …boing… until I hand them their book and with a smile, they dash off to claim a beanbag chair. What really makes me laugh is to see a sixth grader bouncing in front of my computer.
Sometimes I just can’t resist teasing them. Students have a number that the district assigns them. It’s used for their lunches, getting on computers and checking out books. Everyday some student will come in and ask “how many books do I have checked out?” Or “Do I have any books checked out?” Then they stand there expecting an answer. They must think I have memorized all 900 numbers. I have a number of responses such as “I’m sorry I left my crystal ball at home or close my eyes and say,” let me see, hmmm it’s not coming in very clear, you must think harder”.  Some get it; some just look at me as if I’m crazy, until I say “all right you have to give me something, some clue, how about a…number?” Then they grin and recite their number.
TK through 3rd have library cards which speeds up the process of checking out books.  There are times when the littlest ones come to my counter with a death grip on their card and book. I can’t hardly pry it away from them. Sometimes they give the book up, but then I play ‘chase the card’ as they nimbly avoid my advancing fingers trying to pluck it from their hands. It’s like chasing a butterfly, you just can’t get your fingers on it.
For me, I can’t imagine any job more fulfilling and one advantage I have working with these kids is they keep me young. I don’t have time to get old.

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