Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Minerva, the Master of Horror, and Mounting Donuts in Maine

So yesterday, my colleague and I drove all the way up to Bangor, Maine to attend a free workshop at United Technologies Center. The day's agenda touched on a few different aspects of library service such as book talks, mending and weeding books, and how to apply for grants. Some of the sessions might sound like no-brainers to people who have LIS degrees, or someone who's worked in a library for a long time, but they were all valauble. Even if a librarian knows how to weed her own collection, or knows how to glue a book back together, it's always useful to hear how others in your field tackle these day-to-day issues. And I know it's also a struggle for many librarians, especially school librarians, to attend professional development opportunities to share their ideas with others because 1) these workshops are often on school days, and we can't get adequate coverage and or 2)our budget doesn't stretch enough to cover costs of registration and travel. Luckily, this workshop had no registration fee so we could justify it.

Because I reside in northern NH, I had to leave my house at 5:00 am. Luckily I had Minerva with me. She wanted to drive, but I put the kibosh on that pretty quick.

The workshop was a good investment, and I think the most useful part for us was the session regarding grants. This is a skill that I've been wanting to develop for a very long time, ever since I decided to get a degree in history. Unfortunately, my college's Museum Studies department at the time was really more of an independent study, so I missed out on it then. It's a useful skill for almost any type of profession, and we've already found ourselves in the position to apply for them.

On top of the free registration, they also provided some morning refreshments (delicious scones and coffee/tea) as well as lunch (chicken cordon bleu sandwich with hand-cut potato chips followed by strawberry shortcake). It was definitely the best free lunch I've had in a while.

And then we took a quick drive by the Master of Horror's house so I could see it. I brought my first edition of Pet Sematary with me because that's my favorite Stephen King story.

And a couple houses down from Stephen King, another literary minded person had a Little Free Library in the front yard, so I stopped to check it out. I took a book, and I felt bad that I didn't have a book to leave in its place, but I left a thank you note for them.

I really want one of these for my yard. I don't know who'd stop at it because I live on a highway, but I'd still love to try.

The professional part of the day was a resounding success. Unfortunately, I seem to be destined to have many travel misadventures. Right after I dropped off my colleague, my car got a flat tire. Luckily, I have AAA so I just had to request roadside service. But in the meantime, I was about an hour away from home, so my colleague, her husband and their greyhound came to my rescue. The AAA man, a very nice guy named Dave, had just gotten finished mounting my donut (which sounds awful when I say it that way but it's too funny not to) and when I tried to start my car, nothing happened. On top of the flat tire, I also had a dead battery. I swear, I can't make this stuff up. 
I didn't end up getting back home until quarter to nine which made for a much longer day than I'd anticipated.

Minerva insisted on getting out to look at Stephen King's house, too

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