(Picture by Amber Downs)
There are so many things I love about working in a library, but one of my favorite things is the quiet. I’m an introvert by nature, and I find too much noise and stimulation exhausting. Sometimes, I wish we had soft music playing throughout the building, but those times are few and far between. I enjoy best just listening to library ambiance: soft voices and whispers, the “beep” of barcode scanners or the printers, the rustle of turning pages, the soft clicks of keyboards and mice, and the way the books whisper to each other on the shelves (if you don’t believe me, come into the library before we’ve opened sometime and sit quietly in the historic building--the books whisper.).
There are a lot of times that the library is anything but quiet: when people argue their fines, when children shriek in a way that literally curdles your blood, when people talk to themselves or hold the most impolite phone conversations, when all the evening staff arrives at the same time and the noise levels get astronomical in the party-like atmosphere of catching up and getting all the latest news and updates. But I still adore those quiet moments, when my coworkers wear their earphones, and I listen to the live performance of Library Ambiance.