Unshelved by Bill Barnes and Gene Ambaum
comic strip overdue media

Monday, February 27, 2017

Dr. M.S. Viji

of the International 'We Serve' Foundation, the group which took our journals and shipped them to India, posted a lovely thank-you on their Facebook page, and told me I should feel free to share the information. By his count, we donated over 8,000 journals (that may be right, I was just estimating). The forty-foot container with our materials and a total of almost 26,000 books left Friday and should be in Poona, India (aka Pune) in roughly four weeks. Our journals will go to public libraries specializing in the health sciences. Dr. Viji's organisation takes books from kindergarten up through post-doctorate studies. Rotary Clubs throughout India partner with them to distribute the books. Also a special shout-out should be made to the International Book Project, based here in Lexington, which partnered with Dr. Viji's group to send the container to India.

Dr. Viji and I in front of the empty shelves on the first day of packing (of two--these were the shelves the bound journals had been on, whereas the next day we packed the loose journals):

(If I look red-faced and rumpled, it's from all that packing. But we had a good system--he would bring boxes, I would pack, he would take them by cart to his van and transport them to the International Book Project warehouse, a short distance away, and by the time he came back twenty minutes later, I would have packed all the boxes and sat for a moment or two in front of the desk fan to cool off, and then he would drop off more boxes and take the filled ones away. I'd say the first day there were about four trips and maybe forty boxes (about nine fit in the van at one time comfortably, unless there were some small ones to squeeze in), and on the second day I know there were forty-eight, because I counted them as we went). We also discovered that loose/unbound journals are much heavier than 2-5" wide bound journals, even with the cloth covers on the latter, etc. It's just so much harder to pack the loose ones so they're not heavy. Dr. Viji did most of the lifting from cart to van and from shelf or table to cart, thankfully). The two of us worked very well and packed and transported all those journals within two days, so I think that's pretty decent. I think he did about six or seven trips that second day. It was certainly an experience, and I am so thankful I didn't have to recycle or throw away anything, but rather could send them somewhere they will be used.

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