Our little meeting rooms are popular. Not the ones you can schedule, though those are popular too, rather the ones that are first come, first serve, the ones that are like little dining rooms, or, like dorm rooms, or very basic hotel rooms, or whatever. I mean, they're very versatile, which is probably why they're so popular. Need a place to feed and water your traveling carnivorous plant collection, well, if you can score one of those little meeting rooms, more power to you. Who am I to deny you your passion for horticulture.
Of course the trick is in actually getting one of those little rooms.
Many inquire, but if someone is asking it's probably already too late.
In the morning we roll back the entry gates and a small, avid crowd of
library patrons floods upon the library. Do they need my help at the
front desk? No, I am a blurry piece of scenery. Do they need books?
Bosch, we have tons of books, no hurry there. Are they eager to grab a
computer? They are popular, but my library has 137,613 computers so they
tend to stay available throughout the day. No, there is only one
precious, divine resource to heat the peoples' blood at my library, and
that is private space. And so they come, on foot and in wheelchairs,
hobbling with canes, sprint walking and with laser focus, laden with
luggage, equipment, three full square meals, all pouring towards those
precious seven little meeting rooms. Seeing so many people right at the
opening of the library always makes me think that I will be needed at
the front desk, but only the very last of the crowd is not moving at an
earnest, intense, and focused pace. Only the last of the crowd saunters
over to me at the service desk.
I am ready to help. A book she's looking for, perhaps. Maybe she'd like
her own library card or wants to know who wrote Grieg's piano concerto
in A minor, Op. 16 (Grieg! I don't even need to look it up on the
Internet, but I will just to make sure. You never know with these
things). Maybe she needs to know where the bathrooms are, or who writes
the best cookbooks.
"I hear," She says "That you have some private meeting rooms."
"Ah" I reply sadly "We used to. But we've already been open for 17 seconds. They are long gone. Long gone."