Sunday, 28 April 2019

Our local library is also

the home of our local toy library. 
That means we have small children going in and out clutching  not just books but toys they have borrowed. 
Years ago the Senior Cat made a lot of toys for the early toy libraries. It was one of the things he did in his retirement. The staff would come to him with a design they wanted and he would make up something.  
You can't do that any more. All toys have to be bought from approved sellers. Only certain things can be bought. Even getting things repaired is a problem. You can't ask the local man to do it any more unless he is approved and, because he might need to walk into the toy library area itself, he probably needs a police check certificate as well. (I am not sure about the last but it is the sort of thing they are up against.)  
The staff also need someone who can mend the soft toys and the dress up materials that are used in the library. That has to be done "on-site". The materials cannot leave the premises. It could mean someone needing to take a sewing machine in.
Yesterday the knitting and crochet group met at the library. They had changed the room we meet in. That was fine. It is actually a slightly larger room. It still looks out over the park. But, they changed it so that we were in the room where there is a tap which provides boiling water for tea and coffee. 
Now we didn't object to that at all. Some people like a cuppa as they knit. The reason for doing it though was that having to go next door for the boiling water was a hazard. Well yes it would be for me but I am a sensible cat and I get someone else to carry cups of tea.
Our Japanese male member of the group turned up. He's a very nice person. He likes to drink tea. He couldn't get the "smart tap" to work.  We assumed it wasn't working at all. He disappeared after a bit - and came back with a cup of tea. Of course we all wanted to know where he had managed to get it.
He had got it from the other outlet in the library - the one where people not in the group  have to pay. He hadn't paid for it. One of the staff had simply by passed the system there and given him the hot water.  
Mmm....did we all go and do that?
We didn't have to go and do that. One of the staff came in and showed me where to switch the "smart tap" on. A few minutes later we had boiling water available. 
At the end of the afternoon I went into the borrowing area to pick up an inter-library loan. E..., who had shown me where to turn the tap on, gave me a grin and we both agreed that  there might have been a succession of knitters making the hazardous trip across the library and the passage for a cup of tea. It would have meant negotiating small children at the toy library area and people borrowing books and not looking where they were going. It would have perhaps meant spills on the carpet inside - and they must occur anyway.
That would have been far more dangerous than going next door for a cup of tea and wiping up any spill on the hard surface in the passage outside.
And all this was a safety issue?

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