I was scrolling through my Facebook newsfeed the other day and there was an article on the world’s coolest libraries. Number 18 on the list just happened to be the Seattle Central Library, and it is every bit as amazing as the article said it was. Libraries are my favorite places to be anyway, so you can imagine what it was like being there.
One of the most interesting things about the library is the floor of the languages section. Every board is carved with a phrase from one of the books the library carries, and those books come in 14 different languages! The phrases are carved so you can leave impressions on your body, show them to a librarian, and they can find the book the phrase came from.
I probably spent way more time than I should have in the Children’s section, but it was huge. In a back area they were having an event for small children and there were a lot of them participating. I love seeing small people fall in love with the library. Like the adult areas, the children’s book also came in multiple languages.
Who wouldn’t want to spend all day reading in here?
One of the coolest things about the library was adult story time. That’s right, folks, it’s not just for kids anymore. There was an auditorium that sat 200 people. They watched the Super Bowl there this year. I’d have loved to see people getting crazy in the library.
There were also regular events held there. I thought it was great that one event they had was a citizenship class for immigrants who wanted to become American citizens. And let’s not forget the author events!
Being in this place was good for my soul. When I asked if I could take pictures, I was told to be careful not to include any pictures of people because there were a lot of fragile patrons that spent time there. Spending this week in Seattle introduced me to homelessness in a way I haven’t experienced before. Many times I saw people sleeping next to buildings or in the middle of plazas, so I was glad the library was a warm place that welcomed them. They are open 7 days a week, so even on Sundays they can get some relief from the weather.
I hope it doesn’t take me 18 years to get back to Seattle the next time. I’d love to be able to spend more time here.