No borrowed books


in Books and literature, Daily updates, Ottawa

This evening, I was startled to realize that I have only been inside one library since I arrived in Ottawa in July. That was during the tour of Parliament I took with Emily, and thus didn’t involve touching a single book. This is certainly a dramatic change from Oxford: where I would frequently visit two or more libraries in a single day.

Partly, I suppose this is a reflection of my present wealth of unread books. Even devoting as much time to reading as I do, there doesn’t seem to be enough time available to make a great deal of progress through the list. In addition to that, I haven’t been doing much in the way of book-based research. Hopefully, that will change as time goes by.

{ 7 comments… read them below or add one }

Milan November 25, 2007 at 6:18 pm

Some good Oxford libraries:

Emily Horn November 26, 2007 at 5:02 am

The Ottawa library system seems to be pretty cool:

Welcome to Ottawa Public Library
Read the 2007 Strategic Work Plan (PDF)

We are the largest bilingual English-French library system in North America, with 33 branches and two bookmobiles serving the City of Ottawa. Beyond books, magazines and online resources, you can use your OPL card to:

* borrow museum passes
* get discounts on theatre and concert performances
* borrow pedometers and kilowatt meters
* access Ottawa’s university libraries and the Virtual Reference Library
* and join the National Capital FreeNet.

You can read some Baudelaire, or Voltaire while you walk along with your pedometer?

Litty November 26, 2007 at 10:04 am

Doesn’t EC have a library?

Sarah November 26, 2007 at 6:04 pm

Yes, libraries are important. I started to miss the Vancouver libraries rather badly during the prolonged strike, & spent the whole of this morning luxuriating in bed with a library book. I sympathise with the general lack of time, though – perhaps you can catch up with reading over the holiday?

Milan November 26, 2007 at 7:47 pm

The Ottawa library system seems to be pretty cool

Definitely. I have been wanting to visit more museums, as well as test the standby rates of energy consumption of some of my electronics using a kilowatt meter.

Doesn’t EC have a library?

Yes, but it is in another building deeper into Quebec poorly served by public transit.

[P]erhaps you can catch up with reading over the holiday?

My ‘holiday’ period is likely to consist of frantic socializing during a relatively brief span of time in Vancouver. This is one way in which grad school and a job are very different – I am only getting four days of vacation in addition to statutory holidays. At Oxford, I got six weeks!

Sarah November 27, 2007 at 10:31 pm

“I am only getting four days of vacation in addition to statutory holidays. At Oxford, I got six weeks!”

Ouch! But, at minimum, you have 2 plane trips in which there is relatively little to do. From a (perhaps wildly optimistic) perspective that could be seen as an oasis of reading-time :-).

Milan November 28, 2007 at 5:15 pm


I read more on a normal workday evening than I am likely to on a plane flight. I am blessed with the ability to sleep through almost any flight.

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