When I was in preschool, my sister brought me to her grade school library. I thought it was magical to be in a room filled with books–old books, dusty books, mangled books, neglected books. It felt like traveling through time.
Maybe, the story Beauty and the Beast romanticized the idea of a library, and as a child, I can’t help myself feel like Belle too.
My fondness of books led me to enjoy exploring city libraries, school libraries, and even make the most of shared books among friends. From grade school, high school, to college, you can see me borrowing books from the library. I consume them with delight even if, at times, I have to pay a meager sum for the overdue.
Now that I am in my twenty’s, I do not go to libraries for the same reasons I did before. I go to libraries for the air-conditioning, the tables and comfy chairs, and the fast internet.
Partly because my e-book reader can house thousands of books without the bulk and weight. And mostly because we can now access most information on the internet.
My boyfriend gave me lifetime access to an online library, too, as a birthday present, making me feel like a modern Belle.
So you can’t help wonder what will happen to physical libraries in the next decade. Maybe, they need to shift and become a coffee-shop with stable and fast internet access. Then the printed books will become an added experience or an escape from too much screen time.