Sunday, June 24, 2012

I love a little Library

I have become a member of a small free library, one that has been operating since 1875. And one of the books I found there is pictured above, a book about little libraries!

Small Libraries of New Zealand by Margaret Jenner (2005)

Some of these little local libraries seem way bigger on the inside than they look from the outside. What else does a library have in common with the Tardis? You can travel in time! I have been enjoying working my way through the local history books and pamphlets concerning the rural area that I have moved into. My father was born on a farm near here, and my mother's family also lived in the township (in the railway settlement) for a while. The house my father was born in has been immortalised in a sketch in that particular genre of book devoted to 'Notable and Historic Houses of the District'. The house still stands.

Local history. It can be riveting if you are on the track of something, and you find a hint of what you are looking for. On the other hand, it can be so tedious to wade through a mind-numbing level of detail about Ploughing Championships and Church Committees.

I have been doing a lot of reading about the several great Floods that have inundated the swampy farmlands. I can't seem to find the exact level of detail that I'm searching for, namely is the house we are living in in danger of being reached by floodwaters? Anecdote says "no", and our neighbourhood never figures in the dramatic retellings of evacuations and stock losses. But if so, why does the nearby culvert have a big measuring stick in it?

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