It had been a year since I had last been to the Burlington Public Library, and, upon first sitting down at one of the cubicles, I wondered what had kept me away for so long. A few minutes later, it hit me: the smell. Not of the library itself, the building is exceptionally clean and the cafe on the ground level causes the faint aroma of coffee to permeate through the three floors of well-lit stacks. No, the odour that I had been assaulted by originated from the cubicle adjacent to mine.

A man, who appeared to be in his late fifties, was seated next to me, tapping furiously away at the keys on his laptop. His hair resembled a bird’s nest, with tresses twisted and tatted, sticking out in every direction. He looked as though he had been in the library for days, although I knew this not to be the case as it was 12 noon, and the library only opened its doors at 10 a.m. on Saturdays. 

In spite of my fragrant neighbour, I harrowed on with my mission for the day. I was a studious student, steadfastly studying. All sibilance aside, I had assignments to complete and chapters to read. It was just too easy to procrastinate within the walls of my own home, and the library provided the atmosphere I required to buckle down and finish the work I needed to get done. 

Libraries have become my new favourite place to be. If you were to ask any of the individuals I typically associate with during the week where to find me during our lunch hours, they would surely reply, “In the library.” The Niagara College library is my preferred location to kill time between classes. I find a spot to sit down and plug in my laptop, and then I spend the next hour diligently working away at whatever assignment is due next. I once even took a nap in the library. It was unintentional, of course, and I am pretty sure that I drooled all over the slides I had printed out for my Public Relations Principles class. But I will tell you a secret, Internet: I went to class that afternoon feeling fully refreshed.


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