Just after pulling into Broadacres Homes around eleven thirty, a former student with a great big smile walking with a friend calls-out, “Hey Mr. Brooks!” I ask where lunches are distributed during the summer.
“Down the hill at The Rec.”
A familiar face is a good sign on the summer’s first delivery.
A white Athens Housing Authority van pulls up to the community center, then two men unload large plastic bins and carry them inside. The containers are filled with lunches Athens residents can pick up between noon and one.
A handful of folks peer out of their windows and doors as the Bibliobike gets set up. Two women walking toward the community center are the first to ask what this is all about. After browsing, both choose Dr. Seuss books for grand-kids. Next, a first grader leading her lunch-coated baby brother by the hand emerges from the building and heads toward the rig. They immediately snatch two books with Elmo on the cover. Another first grader points to the large face on the cover of a Nelson Mandela biography and asks her great-aunt, “Who’s that?”
Yes, she wants the Mandela book, I think to myself.
“You’ll learn about him in time. Get something you know about,” the woman responds sternly.
The curious reader chooses Diary of a Wimpy Kid and Green Eggs and Ham.