I came to the library today to try to find some serenity. Peace and quiet. Space to think and just exist. I normally would go to Barbara Bush library but with it being the start of the new year I wanted to try something new. I did some searching and found the George and Cynthia Woods Mitchell library in The Woodlands. After a light breakfast, I grabbed my keys and laptop and made my way here.
To get here, I had to drive a lot further down exit 76B than I normally would if I was going to the mall. Once I passed the shopping centers and grocery stores off the main part of the street I found myself surrounded by the color green. So many trees.
I love trees. They seem so sure of themselves but not in a cocky way. They require space and don’t wait for permission to take it. They serve many purposes without bragging. Trees are solid and mostly still. They change without remorse or regret. Trees are sensitive and strong. If I had the choice to be anything else, I’d probably choose to be a tree.
I drove down the now tree lined parkway for a few miles to get to the library. Once I turned onto the street, I noticed that the space and air around the building was calm. There weren’t a lot of people moving around hurriedly. No noise, traffic or otherwise. I felt as though I had made the right choice as soon as I pulled into the parking lot.
The parking lot of the library was so peaceful I sat in my car for a few minutes staring at the trees. For a moment, I thought about not getting out of the car. I pulled my laptop out and was preparing to just enjoy the quiet beauty when the low battery notification popped up on my screen. I put my computer back into my bag and got out of the car. As I walked toward the building I became acutely aware of my skin color. It was a strange thing to have crossed my mind while I was doing something so mundane.
I walked into the library with a bit of hesitation. Not sure If I’d be stopped for some reason as soon as I walked through the doors. I passed the front desk clerk who’s face flashed a moment of disbelief as I walked by. I followed the signs towards the adult services section of the library that lead me upstairs. Once I passed the second gate keeper who seemed to not understand what she was seeing, I felt a bit of relief.
I started to relax a bit more as I walked by row after row of books. I found a chair in an out of the way corner near a window so that I could watch the trees while I decided how to spend my time here.
It’s so quiet in here. But not like a deafening silence. It’s comforting. Hearing the gentle tap, tap, tap coming from others’ keyboards and faint whispers. The air feels charged with the thoughts of the people using this space.
I’ve found serenity today.