Many years ago, during a parish meeting, one of our pastors told us we could improve our surroundings by taking care of problems ourselves when we see them. Don’t wait for someone else. If we see some paper on the ground, pick it up. If we see a burned out light bulb, change it. We should carry that philosophy along with us as citizens of our county.
I was reminded of his comments while watching a story about three priests in Ireland that formed a singing group who now have a number one record. Even though they go on tour and are selling a lot of records, they are still parish priests who have their parish duties. An interviewer asked them if their lives have changed much since becoming so well known in Europe. One of them replied that the last time he went home, the first thing one of the parishioners told him was that there was a leak in the women’s bathroom.
Well, at least the parishioner told him about the problem instead of waiting for someone else to discover it but maybe she could have called a plumber.
Public libraries are used more when the economy is bad. But because of the current economic condition, the state reduced our appropriation by 5 percent and public libraries in other parts of the state have had to reduce hours, cut staff and stop buying books. I started worrying at the end of August and we have been very careful with our spending, so it doesn’t look like we will have to reduce our hours of operation, but this is definitely a lean year.
The Library Board tries not to run to the governments every time we need something. But the Library Board knows the county, city, and towns will help where they can. For example, the county and Lumberton are working together to solve a problem with the library’s roof. And when we received some furniture from the Jenny Jones Foundation, the city sent two men to help us take it off the truck and set it up.
It’s a matter of cooperation and helping each other.
Jo Tudor, our reference librarian, reminded me of a saying that was commonly used when I was growing up: “Use it up, wear it out, make it do, do without.” We’ve had to follow that philosophy over the years and still provide the basic services you need. But, for the time being, they will have to be reduced somewhat.
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Carey Pulley came by the library and gave me a donation for the Spanish American War Memorial that I would like to see placed in the library’s garden. We now have 20 percent of what we need. I only need 16 more $25 donations and we can have the monument made.
Mr. Pulley also brought us some photographs of World War I, World War II and Korea for the Robeson County Museum. They will be a great addition to the military exhibit.
— Bob Fisher is the director of the Robeson County Public Library. He can be reached at email@example.com.