Black Hole Mary
A few years back a lady by the name of Ruby decided it would be a good thing to keep the elderly members of her and my mother-in-law’s church in reading material, or books. That way it would keep their minds active and it is just fun and entertaining to read. An activity they could enjoy.
I think she bought some second hand books and some people donated their old books for the cause. I think we may have donated some books for her cause.
Ruby would visit the elderly with her books on wheels and she would show the elderly person what books she had available and they would pick one or two and off she would go to the next elderly home.
The books were a loan as if it was a library. When they were finished the books were to be returned to get back into circulation so someone else could enjoy the book.
The returning part was the problem. More than several times the elderly person forgot where she put the book she borrowed, and sometimes claimed she even didn’t receive the book.
One lady named Mary was getting a reputation for losing books in her house. I had a good chuckle over this and I named Mary’s house The Book Black Hole. Books that went in never came out. I thought it was funny and harmless.
About that time I was reading everything I could get my hands on by Sharyn McCrumb. She is an excellent fiction writer of the lore and traditions of the people of the mountains in the tri-state mountain area of North Carolina, western Tennessee, and southern Virginia. I finally got all her books and met her and got some of them signed at a book signer fair at our local used bookshop.
I am a collector. I don’t mean to be a collector but it just ends up that way. I start accumulating things I am interested in and suddenly have more than I mean to. And I am very possessive about what I gathered up.
My mother-in-law, on the other hand, is very generous and sharing. What belongs to her is for other people to enjoy as well. We have been lending her the Sharyn McCrumb books because she was beginning to enjoy reading and we had plenty, so she got to read what we read. Then one day over the phone she told Anna she finished the McCrumb book we lent her and she lent it to Mary. The Black-Hole Mary.
When Anna told me I think I jumped about 15 feet across the room. I no longer saw the humor in Mary’s Black Hole.
Luckily, to my amazement, Mary returned it when she finished reading it.