Library Envy?


mdoneil writes "I was just wondering if other librarians have 'library envy' like I do. Do you go to other libraries to see what they have? I do. I have been to libraries in every city to which I have travelled except London. ( I arrived in London on 9/11/2002 @ 6:20AM !, no time to visit the library I had to make train reservations as all connecting flights were stopped).

I have seen libraries in Dublin, ( I did some undergrad work @ Trinity - the Jedi archives ) and many other Irish cities, Madrid, Mexico D.F. and many other Mexican cities, Paris, Iran, Portugal, Belgium, the Vatican, and a bunch of libraries in the States.

Do other people do this too. I hope so. I have decided to use my free time to organize library tours. I think of a reciprocal borrowing type of thing. Librarians from other countries can come to the States to see how we do things, and we can go to other countries to see what they do.

Insofar as I have a few contacts I think I might be able to get the ball rolling. I have some friends at a tour agency in Ireland, and I have some relatives in the religious biz who may have a wee bit of pull at the Vatican libraries. I think a couple of trips to Europe can be arranged.
Bearing in mind that librarians are poor, how does this idea sound?
Would anyone here go on a trip? I am thinking 2K inclusive (air and hotel and a few meals) from an Eastcoast gateway (NYC, ATL, MIA). Other trips such as Iran would of course cost more but they are really interesting. Iranian libraries were fantastic and the librarians really open and helpful.

Let me know your feelings."


For me, leaving CONUS (the continental US) has not been too eventful. I have been to Canada, France, Spain, and Monaco. I never really visited foreign libraries before going to library school. I guess that a goal for me would be to eventually some day visit Toronto Public Library, one of the largest public libraries in North America. The Center for Restoration Studies at Abilene Christian University would also be something I want to see as well!

Eek! How much do you get paid, that you can afford $2k to visit other libraries?

I could just about spring £25 for a daytrip to the National Library of Scotland....

I have always enjoyed checking out other libraries while visiting overseas. Indeed, I very often attempt to make preliminary contact via e-mail before I depart to advise that I would like to visit and see whether I get receptive response. A worldwide directory of contact persons would be great.

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