It is so fitting that my first blog post is about a library. I have loved libraries for as long as I can remember. I remember exact details and locations of books in my elementary school library, the book mobile, every public library I have ever visited and all of the university libraries I have spent time in. As a kid, librarians were my heroes.
When I came to San Diego six years ago I was so disappointed in the Central Downtown library. The book selection was fantastic, but it was not a place that anyone would want to spend any more time in than necessary. It smelled like mildew and always felt dirty. I’d run in, grab my books from the reserve section, and then clean the books with disinfectant wipes when I got home. I lived in the East Village part of downtown San Diego for over three years and a new library was always a rumor, but it never felt like it was going to actually going happen, especially with the recession of 2009. I moved from East Village about two years ago and I’ve tracked the progress of the new library – it has been exciting to watch the San Diego skyline change with the addition of the unique steel dome that can be viewed on the Coronado bridge, flying into Lindbergh Field, and at the end of my street.
People, this building was worth the wait. The new library is a museum, school, park, community center, viewing area, event space, and reading room. It made me so happy. Around every corner and at every level there are new surprises and architectural features. The building is concrete and steel that have been warmed up with innovative design and beautiful light. It is full of sunny nooks to read in, a Seuss-filled children’s section, a teen reading area, an astounding rare books room, a store, a cafe, and spaces for weddings and other events (!!!). My favorite part of the library is the Helen Price Reading Room. It highlights a San Diego bay-view that people would pay millions for. Unfortunately, I only had my iphone and I couldn’t get a shot of the room because there was so much reflection from the ginormous windows. The views from all areas in the library are spectacular and make San Diego, in particular the continually up-and-coming East Village area, shine.
Since this is downtown San Diego, it is inevitable that this space will have quite a few homeless people visiting it…unfortunately, I know some people will care a lot about that and refuse to go. I also know that it cost a lot of money (200 million!) and I am fully aware that a large majority of people think that libraries are going the way of the dinosaurs, but libraries are one of our most important resources. The United States public library system is quite extraordinary. It offers free reading, internet access, and education to millions. It is our tax dollars making a positive difference. I would be broke if I didn’t have library access. I take full advantage of free reading and I always have a reserve list that has about twenty books on it. If you are a reader, I recommend that you do the same.
There were three long lines of people waiting to get library cards when I was walking out. I’ve never seen anything like that at a library. Hopefully people stay excited and keep visiting. I plan on coming at least once or twice a month.
This library seemed to take forever to come to fruition, and I feel like this blog has been the same. I have been talking about starting a blog for the last five years. I am not sure what my problem is and why it took me so long. I’m here now, and as this blog gets rolling, I look forward to sharing information on what I am reading and watching and doing and eating. I have a lot of work to do as I figure out how to do everything that I want to on this site. Thanks for hanging around as I begin this long-delayed project. I hope that, like the new library, this blog will be worth the wait!
13 thoughts on “FIRST POST: San Diego Central Library”
Awesome! Now I want to go…and dust off my library card. Books and bagels field trip? So excited for you that the blog is up and running. And it’s already making people want to go do new things. Nicely done. 🙂
Books and bagels! Does it get better?
What a perfect first entry to your blog. So proud of you finally taking the plunge. Cant wait to visit the library next time I come see you!
Can’t wait to take you. I love the Rochester library so much – but this one is the best I have ever been in.
Love the building and LOVE reading your thoughts! So excited for you to share more!
XOXO. Thanks for logo and the continual pushes. Credit for your logo will be up soon!
Great photos and great start to blogging! Librarians are my heroes also. Now I’m going to get you a Nancy Pearl action figure for your office.
Thanks for letting me know who Nancy Pearl is – and thanks for answering all of my questions every day about writing rules.
Love this, Laura! Love everything about it….I love that you are sharing your words, your thoughts, and your heart with us. And, I love all that you will share to come….lots of good reads, I’m sure…as well as good food. 🙂
ps- Just seeing these amazing architectural lines of this building and feeling your love for it through your words, made me think we should do a little photoshoot there when I visit in December! That would be so fun!
Thanks Meg! I can’t wait to see all your pictures of the entire trip.
Great start for your first blog! Thank you for inviting us the many points of interest that san Diego offers! The San Diego Central Library is a great choice. Anne-catherine
Sorry for the typo: I meant ” Thank you for inviting us to the many points of interest San Diego offers…” AC
Wow I can’t wait to visit!! It’s time to get a library card! Thank you for the great info!