Ay, remember those days when you begged your teacher for a pass to the library. Not to check out a book or complete a research assignment, but rather to avoid listening to a lecture about George Washington crossing the Potomac. Even worse was watching the biology teacher cut up a frog. The library was a great place to see friends from other classes.
Fast forward to retirement in a quiet little town, a village it may even be called. Certainly calling it a city is a misnomer. Still, the small two room library in Everglades City has a charm unparalleled in a public school or big city public reading center.
What makes it so charming? First, it is compact. There are more books one could read in a lifetime. Yet they are stack from floor to the ceiling in an orderly fashion. Volunteers keep them alphabetically aligned. The E. City library is a branch of the Collier County Library System. Therefore, new and old books can be ordered within a day. Second, there is a room for the kids, videos and dvd's galore. Better than seeing the newest film release, the E. City library is chock full of classic movies like Casablanca, and the old Clint Eastwood Movies. Third, the E. City library is the office of licensing, notarizing, and other documenting. Fourth, the E. City library is akin to the barbershop on the old Andy Griffith show. It is a place where folks gather up the latest news about the townsfolk as well as the current political issues.
The real gem of the Everglades City library is the lady behind the desk. Efficient and cheerful with a wealth of knowledge is Roberta. She welcomes newcomers, provides computer assistance, and is as reliable as the sun that shines on this tiny fishing village. To see pix of the Everglades City Town Hall, where the library is housed you will have to do your own internet search. Below is a sharp contrast to it. On Big Pine. in the Florida Keys, the inside of the library is just a square shaped room. My first impression was more of a deterrence than an invitation to finding an enchanting story to take home and snuggle up with. As you can see the entrance way is enough to deter any hopes of getting lost in an enchanting story. Then, again, maybe one shouldn't judge a book by its cover!