I don’t know why but I have a weird worry that I won’t be welcomed in a reference library, that I might feel out of place in one perhaps.
On my penultimate day of the month, I learn that this is absolute rubbish.
I am sitting in Richmond Reference Library, in a wood-panelled room, next to the window from which I can see the river. When the library assistant asked me, when I walked in, if I was okay, I was worried at first that she might tell me that the library was closing soon. Or, what on earth did I think I was doing here? In a reference library?
I told her that I’d just came to look around, that it was my first time here.
“I’d recommend visiting our Quiet Study Area,” she told me straightaway. “It’s quite an impressive room, and there’s a lovely view of the river.”
She’s not wrong.
So often I have felt, as I have explored new libraries that I’m discovering a secret. A local’s tip. A precious, unexplored part of the land.
And who has the password?
We all do.