I was always a bookaholic as a child and still am today. I always had a bookcase full of books, although you only ever got to have a new one when it was your birthday or Xmas and the rest of the year, you had to make do with the local lending library.
My bookcase was made by my father, as a welcome home present, when I had to go into hospital to have my tonsils removed, aged about 6 or 7, together with a couple of books, to start my collection.
I can remember being quite willing to go to bed early, so that I could read until the designated “lights out” time and then a little after, if I could get away with it.
Christmas was always special, as I always got a couple of my favourite annuals: Girl’s Crystal, Princess Tina and Judy are a few that I can remember.
Books included, just about every Enid Blyton book I could get my hands on; The Famous Five, The Secret Seven, Malory Towers etc.
There was also Black Beauty by Anna Sewell; The Water Babies by Charles Kingsley; and Kenneth Grahame’s The Wind In The Willows.
Saturday afternoon was always my favourite time of the week, as we all went as a family to the town library. I can remember there was a central lobby, with 3 separate doors leading from it; to the reference library, adults library and children’s library.
It was great the first time I was allowed into the children’s library on my own, whilst my parents went into the adults library. That was in the days before library cards, when each book had it’s own ticket, which was removed and filed ready to be replaced when you returned the book, then the book was stamped with the return date. Seeing the date being stamped inside the cover was always great fun.
Right up until I left school, I always harboured a secret yearning to become a Librarian and still do, if the truth be known. Although I think I would have spent too long reading the books, to actually let people borrow them and woe betide anyone who would dare to damage or deface the books !!
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