Pandemic Gratitude

A Reason to Give Thanks
Posted on 08/07/2021
Dan Owens

All of us have been dramatically impacted by COVID and now, just when we think we see the light at the end of the tunnel, “Delta” threatens to take us back to an earlier stage of the pandemic. Thankfully, it looks like here in Pullman we still have the chance to avoid that outcome. But if that does happen, I can say one thing for certain- the patrons of Neill Public Library will stick with together, and show amazing patience and friendliness during the toughest of times.

How do I know this? Because it’s already happened. When Neill Public Library re-opened for curbside pickup in June of 2020, we had all-new processes and procedures. To be honest, we expected it might not go that smoothly- perhaps patrons would be really upset, and would they actually figure out where to park and how to call us to pick up their items?

We never should have worried. The patrons- all of you- turned out to be the best and easiest part. We received so many kind words and compliments, and it helped us (the remaining staff) adapt and get through some very busy days, and that kindness and patience continues to this day.

Now the library has fully reopened (come visit!) and while we’re still delivering items curbside, nearly all of our patrons are now coming into the building to browse and pick up their items. It is, without a doubt, an improvement. But I kind of miss the ritual of curbside delivery. And while delivering items curbside. I got to know many of our patrons and- crucially- their cars. I’d like to thank them directly. Many thanks go to:

Joan (green Subaru) Celina (Honda Accord, items in the trunk, many friendly waves), Andrea (Lexus, also in the trunk) Linda (red Subaru), Mary (red Subaru), Henry (sweet pickup, put the items in the back), Graham (nice truck, Graham), Anna (red Excursion, hard to miss), Angelia (black Subaru, smiling faces), Katie (gray minivan- they all look the same), Elisa (blue minivan, great kids), Arlene (minivan, more of a champagne color), Jeff (usually a Prius), Travis (blue Mazda, don’t forget to get Caroline’s books too), Jacob (blue Subaru- we see a lot of Subarus), and Mary (older Toyota, always a fun delivery).

And that’s not everyone, not even close. More thanks to go to Kirsten (blue minivan), Hugh (Chevy Malibu), Matt (another Malibu!), Gloria and John (sweet new Teslas), Anna (another champagne minivan, but this time a Toyota), Robin (another minivan, also great kids), Susan (silver Honda Fit, I used to have one), Lynde (usually, but not always, a Toyota SUV), Rachel (classic Suburban!), Betty (red Ford SUV), Nancy (more Subaru), Karen (usually a Prius), Liz, (also a Prius, thanks for the tea and snacks!) Inga, Katherine, and Ken (red Toyota SUVs, I often got them confused), Patrick (Dodge pickup, items go in the cooler), Erin (more minivan action), Don and Amelia (more mysteries are on the way, I promise), and Mandy and Jaclyn (the Subarus never end).

I’m running out of space, and I know I’ve missed so many of our wonderful patrons with this incomplete list. I suspect some of you have purchased new cars anyway.  All of you are the reason we come to work every day, and why I love working in Pullman. Thank you.

Dan Owens
Adult Services Librarian
Neill Public Library