Later today, if all goes well, Cohen will be home again, and I’m really looking forward to that. I am sure he will be tired (their flight departs Guatemala City early this a.m. and they have a fairly long bus ride from the city where they’ve been working to get to Guatemala City), but also full of stories to tell. Below is a photo taken by one of his team members of the house that his small group built this past week for the two women who are in front. I’m not sure but I think they are mother, daughter, and grandchildren. There’s also a photo taken from a mountain hike that the whole missions team took on their “day off” yesterday, showing a beautiful view. I’m not sure who took these photos (they were shared on social media), so apologies for the lack of credit.
Here in the U.S., tomorrow is Father’s Day. We are planning to get together with Keegan and go on a trip to the Chicago Botanic Gardens, or perhaps go somewhere to fish and enjoy a picnic — not sure which, yet. Regardless, it’ll be a rare time for us all to be together (except we’ll miss daughter-in-law Stevie, who’ll spend time with her dad), and I’m looking forward to that.
At work, as usual, many different things are going on. The physical relabeling of hundreds of thousands of books to use Library of Congress Classification call numbers is well underway. This is also a period of ramped up activity for the project to migrate to a new integrated library system, which I am leading. Most people won’t see the end result until a year from now but there is a lot of behind-the-scenes work to make that happen. As with any major change, there are some uncertainties and a lot of learning new things. Existing processes and structures will need to change. I have no illusions about the new system being perfect, but nevertheless, I am very happy that we are implementing it and look forward to this big change.
A few other new things this week: my doctor diagnosed carpal tunnel syndrome in my right hand, so I am now getting used to wearing a wrist splint. I am doubtful about its effectiveness but will give it a try. I have been a heavy computer user for 35 years so feel fortunate that I haven’t had this issue before now. Also, my library recently implemented campuswide access to the online version of the current New York Times, something many users have wanted for years. As part of this access, I am able to use the well-designed NYT mobile app on my iPhone and iPad and now make use of it on a daily basis. The initial registration process is a bit tricky, but once that is sorted out, everything works well, and I am glad we chose to invest in this access for our users. I think it will be very popular.
Work also continues on refining floor plans and renderings for various options for a new/renovated library facility. We met with architects earlier this week to review the latest designs, and there was a lot to digest. In other news, there is a possibility — yet to be confirmed — that we may not have to deal with as much of a budget cut as we anticipated for the next fiscal year. If so, that will be a great relief.
I’ve mentioned this before, but aside from more rainfall at times, the month of June has so far been exceptionally fine, weather-wise. I’m enjoying the low humidity and moderate (mid-60s to mid-70s Fahrenheit) temperatures, along with sunshine and nice breezes. It reminds me of weather in the South Island of New Zealand.