If Pangzi’s spelling ability is already a doubt, a visit to The LLiBrary has made it worse.
“Daddy, I have something important to tell you,” he said ominously, back from school one day.
“Made your classmate pregnant?” I gasped.
“What is pregnant?” he asked.
“When you know how to spell the word, I’ll tell you.” That’s a safe enough answer, I thought. “Anyway, what is it this time?”
Pangzi took out a stack of papers from his bag, and sheepishly handed them to me.
The cover page read: Spelling Assessment 30/100.
I did a double take. That’s so much better than my consistent zero when I was his age.
“Why didn’t you tell me there’s mid-year exam?” I snarled.
“Daddy, I told you so many times,” he said angrily.
Oh, he did?
“You get this kind of score and still dare to raise your voice?” I said, ignoring the last remark. “I’ll have to take you to the library to read more then.”
Not just any library, but The LLiBrary.
That’s the newest kid on the block I’ve long wanted to visit. Pangzi has just unwittingly given me an excuse.
The LLiBrary is located on the third level of the Lifelong Learning Institute, next to Paya Lebar Square. At a fraction of the usual size, it’s not your typical library, and doesn’t carry the usual range of books.
Entry to The LLiBrary is also not straightforward. You need to scan your identity card to let yourself in through what looks like MRT gantries. I guess this is the only public library in Singapore that wants to trap you inside.
Once you get past the ordeal, the sight of a book heaven will welcome you and put you at ease. The LLiBrary is more like a well decorated commercial book store, with lit up shelves and modern interior design.
There are quirky high chairs that provide much needed privacy for a quiet read. Visitors can also choose to rest at one of many colourful cushioned seats or on the wooden steps of a mini amphitheatre.
The LLiBrary must have been the brainchild of the Workforce Development Agency who runs the building, and naturally focusses on self-help and skills upgrading titles.
“Daddy, where are the children books?” Pangzi wondered.
There is none.
“Go find yourself something useful to read, and don’t bother me,” I said.
Sometimes, I give excellent advice like this.
“Daddy, why is ‘library’ spelt with two Ls?” Pangzi asked.
To that, I have no answer. Someone’s trying to be cute with names.
Therein lies the problem. After the visit, his spelling has actually deteriorated.
“How many times must I tell you no word starts with the same two letters!” I ranted.
“Oops?” he offered.
You win. I rest my case.
We were here: