I have the privilege of working on a beautiful campus. There is a pond smack in the middle, there are a couple of gazebos for meditating, there is a beautiful chapel (arguably the most beautiful building in Boynton Beach), there is even a tree swing! There is also a beautiful library. It is not a massive library, it is rather quaint by university standards but still, it is a lovely library.
This is where it gets interesting: In order to get to my office, you have to go through or around the library, through is the much faster route.
So not only do I walk by the periodicals section where I can -at a glance- look at the new magazines coming in, then I lower my blood pressure by walking through the peaceful, quiet stacks, and right before getting to my office, there is a shelf with free books that the library no longer wants. This is my perdition.
I wrote about libraries and bookstores recently (ok, a year and a half is recently for dinosaurs like me), but that was before I had to work next to the goodie room that is the “Free books” shelves outside my office!
Over the months I have collected many varied books. My most recent find – and the detonator for this blog – was a first edition 1944 Divine Comedy with drawings by William Blake. Last year a retired history professor went into an assisted living facility, and he donated his whole library! It was chock-full of great books of which I got a good number of. And since my office is next door to these books, I always have first choice. In fact, sometimes I have even help the librarian stack the free books as he rolls them out!