But the best part of my first day working in a public library came at about 1:30 p.m. when a group of 40 elementary school students walked in, decked out in their Halloween costumes.
As I walked around the library returning books to their proper places on the shelves, I could hear the Head of Youth Services librarian engaging and entertaining those kids like there was nothing more important in the world – all by simply reading them a book.
Story Time wasn't just something these kids were forced to participate in. In fact, I wouldn't believe any of them if they said they'd rather be somewhere else. These children were hanging on the librarian's every word as they actively listened, asked questions, laughed, gasped, oohed and ahhed.
I remember when I was one of those kids (I would have probably been dressed as Jasmine from Aladdin). But if you asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up back then, my guess is I would have answered veterinarian or doctor. And as I witnessed those children at the library, I had to wonder how many of them would reading really grab.
How many of those kids sitting in that room right at that moment would continue to find that same enjoyment in reading when they got to high school? What about college? Beyond? Who in that room will grow up to publish novels, illustrate books or be a best-selling author? Maybe none – but perhaps one.
Not knowing it at the time, it was childhood moments like that Story Time which ultimately made me want to become a children's librarian. And I hope that when those kids are my age, whatever they choose to do will be – at least in some small way – shaped by that moment in the Twin Lakes Community Library. And I can say that I was a fly-on-the-wall observer, watching their dreams take root.