Saturday, 23 June 2007

going back -- in time and place

Strangely there is a place in a public library service for an unfashionable librarian with outdated views (like believing that books are really quite "cool" and computers are a mere adjunct to the magnificence of the tome). An Inner City library, a nice big old-fashioned one with a reference library and "no mobile phones" signs, has kindly dragged me out of retirement to cover some summer vacancies. Starting in two weeks time. So I'll have to dust down my best cardigan (the green one with the leather elbow patches) and polish my bifocals and get ready for the exciting cut and thrust that is 21st century librarianship.

Ah, it's nice to feel wanted.

So I spend this weekend in the country, visiting friends in Devon. On the way down, I notice some young people on the train heading down to Glastonbury festival. What so struck me is how smart they looked in their clean clothes. How times change! When I went to Glastonbury back in the 19XX's, you could buy a ticket at the gate and then get yourself a plate of lentils, a gallon of scrumpy, an eighth of rocky (so hard you could break your teeth on it), a nice strong cup of mushroom tea, and still have change of a ten bob note. I gather that the young people of today pay tens of pounds for the privilege of covering their designer jeans in mud and to watch popular beat comboes performing their latest video recordings. Not for me any more, alas. My idea of a good time is a small glass of Southern Comfort chased down with a hot chocolate and then bed.

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