No ladies and gentlemen, I´m not talking about the kind men and women who set up shop at libraries and sell used books and other things. I´m talking about ratones - rats.
Two days this past week I came into the library to discover a little bag of creamer on the floor with a hole in it and half the creamer eaten. Hmmm... Friday I got started cataloging the reference section of the library. This is the last section of shelving over by the wall. As I looked at the books and the shelves I realized there was evidence of some sort of rodent (i.e. droppings) all over the place!
It really can´t be helped. The windows here don´t close well and there is a giant gap under all three doors in the library. It would be no problem for some small or even medium sized creature to squeeze in every night and make itself at home, snuggled up between stacks of books. Luckily, as far as I can tell, they haven´t started stealing pages from the books to make themselves nests.
We´ve found a total of 4 or 5 books that have been eaten straight through by some sort of mysterious bug that I have yet to see. The librarians are being good about disposing of these books right away.
It´s kind of a never ending battle to keep books in good condition here. It rains all the time, at least in the rainy season, and there are no temperature controls or humidity controls which can cause some books to get damp and mildew. And of course there is no stopping any sort of creature from getting into the library. It´s a very interesting experience after the temperature controlled, light controlled, humidity controlled, non-rodent, non-pest, quiet libraries I´m used to in the states.
Oh, this week I got help from a couple students from Probigua. They came in and stuck spine labels on books for 3 days, four hours a day. It was wonderful to finally see all that work complete. I really feel like I´m getting somewhere now. I have almost 400 books cataloged and still have three weeks to go.
I´ll try to keep updating you all on my adventures. It was hard this last week because the internet was down all week. A big rainstorm over the weekend took down some trees I guess. We have been having fabulous rain storms with huge bolts of lightening and never-ending rolling thunder almost every day for the last week. I love it!