DEAR GILES

How quickly things change. The picture below was from April 22, 2015, not even a year ago. We visited Maplewood Library, where I was finally a bona fide librarian, having just a month earlier secured a permanent, part-time position at 11.5 hours a pay period as an every-other-weekend librarian. I’d been a substitute librarian in the system for just over a year as well as in the another library system in the area, and I was able to teach as an adjunct information literacy instructor at a local community college, but this was it. This was the first job where I was considered a permanent-staff librarian. I was excited to have you see my workplace, and we did a photo shoot outside on the sidewalk since you could not go inside.

Little did we know that just a month and a half later, I’d be offered a full-time job in a different library system in a different county. And that a month after that when I started, in fact at the end of my first week on the job, we’d receive the terrible news that you had an inoperable bladder tumor. The vet offered an anti-inflammatory medication as the only useful treatment, so we started you on it right away, and perhaps it helped keep the tumor in check for another six months so that we could move into our new house with you, and you would at last have your own fenced-in yard to protect from squirrels.

I’m thinking of this picture in particular because in a few hours, I’m heading over to Maplewood Library for the first time since I stopped working there last summer. I’m dropping off some boxes of federal tax forms for the library system to provide for patrons–boxes I received at my new job where we are not providing these forms any more. I’m also going to eat lunch at Cafe’ine, the wonderful Thai cafe in the building with tasty food, coffee, and bubble tea.

at maplewood library
Picture from April 22, 2015.

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