I don’t know how old some of you are, but Thursdays were bookmobile days at my school. And even though our school had a decent library (full of Judy Blume, Norma Fox Mazer, and Beverly Cleary) and my mom took us to the public library a lot, there was something about having a big comfortable bus stocked with books that seemed magical.
I can remember my excitement as I stepped up the stairs and into the narrow aisle where rows of books greeted my eager eyes. I was a starving child taking in a feast, not knowing which food to eat first. Animal stories? Fantasy? Realistic fiction? So many choices, and not a lot of time–the bookmobile showed up after school and my siblings and I took the bus home. We had very little time to visit the bookmobile, select and check out books, and zip down the sidewalk to the bus before it left. I learned to make quick decisions, begging my friends to tell the bus driver not to leave without me. I must have my books; but I also needed a ride home.
I was so happy to know there was a day commemorating bookmobiles and that there are dedicated book lovers and librarians bringing books to communities who need them in this fun way. I salute you and thank you. And readers: may you have that sense of wonder, anticipation and deep gratitude as you walk into the hallowed ground that is a bookmobile.
To find out more about National Bookmobile Day and download activities and images, click here. If you have a bookmobile story to share, please do!
I’d forgotten how much I loved the bookmobile until I read your blog. Ours would park in the lot of the nearby convenience store. I remember hesitantly walking up the steps, unsure whether it was OK for me to go in. The librarians and volunteers who staffed it were so kind, happy to pass on their love for books to a kid.
I love your memory of hesitancy – is it okay? – but then being brave because you knew you belonged inside. I’m glad you had such a positive experience. I’ve been thinking about the bookmobile all morning :-).