Saturday, December 13, 2014

A Summer Day in December

Today the temperature was 45 F (7 C). That makes this day nearly 60 degrees warmer than the -20 F (-29 C) we had at this time last year! That is why I call this a summer day.

The first event of the day was picking up my older daughter, who lives in a group home elsewhere in Saint Paul. She had a haircut appointment at 11:30. then we went for lunch. Our restaurant choice put us in the Highland Park neighborhood where I used to live. Neither of us had been in the recently renovated Highland Park Public Library since it had re-opened.

It is the most used branch library in Saint Paul and was really showing its age -- its 1970s design and too small for the number of patrons that use it now. It also was not exactly accessible if one needed to use a wheel chair. And the lack of accessibility became more difficult over time. When I first moved to St. Paul I had a broken leg in a cast and had a temporary handicapped parking permit. That is when I started to use this library because it was very accessible. But had I tried to do the same even one year ago it would have been much more difficult.

Wow! that's are our conclusion now that we have seen the renovated library.

First it is totally accessible and the architecture has been changed to the 21st century. The picture  to the right is of the computer lab/internet area. For readers in other countries -- internet cafes never really caught on in the United States. And now in countries where one used to find them they are disappearing because of the widespread availability of Wi-Fi. However, public libraries provide computers and internet services for patrons are part of the mission to provide information services to patrons. In addition there were many tables in the library with good electrical connections where one could bring a personal computer and work there, using the library's Wi-Fi connection.

The picture to the left is the start of the children's area. This shows some of the 21st century design.

Another thing I liked is a Teen Express area. This area has tables teens and young adults may use for studying and internet access, along with the book collection for this age group.

We came back to my apartment and relaxed for bit. Then we went downstairs to the Lund's market to get some vegetables for supper. Much to my delight I found my favorite black current sparkling water on sale for 99 cents rather than the usual price of $3.00. This is part of the 12 Days of Christmas sale and I'm going to go down again in the morning to see if it is still that price.

Then my granddaughter who theoretically lives with me -- I say theoretically because she spends a great deal of time with her boyfriend's family -- showed up to report she had just come from urgent care where she was found to have a lung infection. After resting for a bit she decided she wanted to meet a friend at the skating area. So we walked over there.

On the way we passed the Fitzgerald Theater decked out with holiday colors rather than usual purple.
 The skating area was busy on this "summer" evening.

From here we also saw what has become the traditional candle on the side of the Lawson Building.

Rice Park is glowing with lights.

We walked over to in front of the Central Library to get a good view of the Christmas Tree.

We went to take a better look at the trees along the garden area of the St.Paul Hotel.

Walking back home we got a very good view of the Capitol.

All in all it was a great "summer" day in December.

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