A blissful library experience

One of the advantages of being a student is the holidays – four weeks off Monday college days. However, the downside is that there are essays to write (and just two weeks off from the church bit of training), which amongst all the excitement of Christmas, is rather arduous.

Thanks to having had a research-based job for the last few years, the return to essay writing hasn’t been as much of a shock to the system as it might have been, but that doesn’t mean I always have the motivation needed. Combine that with Christmas events at church; choir rehearsals; parties; drinks; present shopping; flat decorating; and visiting friends – there’s not that much room for studying. Fortunately, one friend suggested combining their visit from Sweden with a day studying together at the British Library – genius. (It works because you can’t chat in the reading room, so no distractions.)

My cunning plan for having a productive Christmas was that I was going to be spending the festive period at a theological college. Sometimes, just sometimes, the fact that my parents live at a college comes in handy – at Christmas when the massive college fridges are very useful; last year when we needed all their urns during the water shortage; and, when I need books for an essay.

Good intentions count for little when there’s family to have fun with, but once the fun elements (i.e. sibling & husband – joke, mother!) departed, I settled down to some hard work. What I discovered was the most blissful library experience ever:

  • I didn’t need to go outside to get there and could wear my slippers.
  • The library was empty – and likely to stay that way – meaning I could listen to music (and, inevitably, sing along). 
  • From my table I had a view, and not just any view – one of vegetation. In London I’m lucky if I get a Victorian lamp-post.
  • The aforementioned vegetation was mostly my parents’ garden, which meant that for part of an afternoon I had a great view of my Dad trying to re-build his arch which the wind seemed determined to decimate. 
  • From my seat, I could also see the window of my parents’ dining room. This meant that I could stay studying until the light came on in that room, at which point I knew it was time to offer assistance.
  • My study breaks included home-cooked meals which I didn’t have to pay for. You don’t get that at the BL.
    Somewhere in amongst that vegetation is my father…

    I know the BL’s only 10 minutes walk away and King’s Maughan library’s just 20 minutes, but I have to wear shoes to get to them…

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