OK. I admit it. I’ve been holding out on you. I haven’t yet introduced you to one of my very favourite places in Whangarei.
It’s the public library. I joined up on our very first day here, only hours after taking possession of the farmlet. Once upon a time I used to be a librarian, and one of the things on my list of essentials for a place to buy land was easy access to a decent size library system.
Although nowhere near as large as those in Auckland or Wellington, this is positively vast compared to many of Northland’s rural libraries. As a bonus I find it architecturally rather lovely with its glass frontage and the keyhole staircases at each end of the building.
They remind me of the stairs up to the second level of Wellington Central Library (1991, Athfield). Both buildings are so much more appealing than the central library in Auckland. I can’t find reference to the architect, but given Auckland’s rather unimaginative 1970’s aesthetic I’m picking it as a design by Bob from the works department*.
Anyway, enough criticism. Auckland Libraries have far and away the best public library book collection in the country. When I’m there I’m fizzing with the excitement of all those ideas in one place rather than looking for architectural elegance. It’s been more years than I care to remember since library school, but I still find libraries the most delightful of places.
* Any similarities between Bob and persons actually employed in the works department at Auckland City Council during the 1970s are purely coincidental.