Today, I begin my work here–at the Universiteitsbibliotheek.
It’s a beautiful building directly between our home and city center, a short five-minute bike ride. Students weave their bikes in and out of the bike garage underneath the library and I joined in–just observing how the locals do it most efficiently. Sure, time one, it’s slow for me, but I’ll get the hang of it quickly.
I didn’t have the credentials, initially, to enter because I don’t have my university card at the moment, but I was able to show my employment agreement letter and they let me in. The library is made of many corridors and lots of sitting rooms to study. The books reach the full two floors in most of the rooms. There is a lot of knowledge floating around in this building, much of which is in the students’ brains as they prepare for winter exams–yes, after the winter break.
My own work begins with this kind of work, trying to get back into blogging (it’s been four years since really being focused on it–of course, I’ve been up to a lot in the last four years, but still…) and working on making my various websites more friendly to visitors, expanding content. Today, I’ve been reading a lot–mostly, I’ve been reading my mentor’s works and findings. I need and want to pick her brain directly, of course, but from what I can see, a lot of our issues of cruelty are the same: lots of links to absent parenting as well as poverty issues and more. It’s been good work for the day and it’s not yet noon.
It’s true, I’m here to talk to students. That will come. I’ve already reached out to neighbors to get me in touch with favorite teachers of their own. I’m days away, I hope, from my first school visit. My official paperwork meeting with the university is on Thursday. The work is picking up: no, not the direct work with students, but the work to make that happen.