I made a terrible realization a few weeks ago. I feared that I had actually permanently and forever misplaced that which did not belong to me, that which had been loaned to me on the understanding that it would be returned in the condition to which I had received it: I speak of a library book.
This one in particular:
Growing up as a librarian’s daughter, I had healthy respect for libraries and library books. Defiling, defacing, writing in, and doggearing books (even ones we owned) was strictly prohibited. This was so ingrained in me that when I got to college and was actually encouraged to write in books, I had a terrible time doing it.
But, the gravest sin of all, was losing a library book. I’ve been late getting my books back, but I returned them and I paid the fine. I’ve never lost a book.
This time, though, I searched all over hither and yon. I questioned suspects – Mr. X remembered last seeing it in the bathroom and after that has no memory. The kitties chose to exercise their right to remain silent. G listened very attentively but merely reminded me that it had been at least two minutes since I had petted him and it was about time for a repeat performance. No one gave me any answers I could use. I searched the house, but to no avail.
And then, finally, this week, I had to admit defeat. I had looked everywhere that was possible (and quite a few places that weren’t) and still, no book. So, head hung in shame, I went to the library, admitted my sin and bought forgiveness for the exceedingly inexpensive price of $14.95. I was supposed to pay $18.95, but since that particular book had been lent quite a few times, I got a discount. I have a receipt and should the day ever come when the book miraculously emerges from its uber hiding place, I will be able to get a refund.
Until that day, though, I am now have a clear conscience and cannot be labeled that most terrible name: Loser of Library Books!