It’s officially “that time of the year” when the holiday commercials, songs, programs and movies begin to bombard us nonstop until New Year’s Day. By my count, and believe me math was never my best subject, that’s 40 days of holiday merriment and well-wishes.

But seriously, if there has to be a “time of year” when we feel we need to be thankful and kind, there is no better time than right now. Despite the near-daily bombardment of depressingly bad news that exposes horrific affronts to basic human decency there are still reasons to be thankful each and every day.

At Schuyler Public Library, we are thankful for the patrons who choose to visit (and sometimes challenge) us six days each week. We are thankful for the dedicated community members who volunteer their time to serve on the library board and library foundation. We are thankful, and excited, to be preparing to move to a new facility that will make the community proud and make our patrons excited to visit your library.

As librarians we are thankful to live in a world that still values the written word and acknowledges the importance of books and libraries. As Carl T. Rowan, crusading journalist, best-selling author and defender of affirmative action, once wrote: “The library is the temple of learning, and learning has liberated more people than all the wars in history.”

But above all, the holiday season is the time (if you need a special time) to be thankful for your friends and family. It would be a lonely life indeed without those loved ones we all go home to at the end of a challenging, fun, exhausting, exhilarating or nerve-wracking workday. Or it could be just a friendly face, a smile or a wave as someone drives past you in their car.

Schuyler is a community of immigrants, so whether your roots are from Ireland, Czechoslovakia, Mexico, Guatemala, Somalia, Nigeria, Ethiopia or Native American, remember that kindness is universal; there should be no language barrier. The message of the holiday season needs no interpreter; just be nice to one another. Who knows, it just might catch on for more than the 40-day holiday season.

Have a happy Thanksgiving and see you at the library.

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