Olivia Newport childhood libraryI guess I’m feeling sentimental today. No deep thoughts. No efforts at advice. Just warm fuzzies.

Maybe it’s because this is Thanksgiving week, and I’m thinking about things I’m thankful for. The building in this photo is one of those things.

This was the pubic library of my childhood. My church also had an awesome library and a caring librarian enthused about getting kids interested in reading, so I was doubly blessed. This photo surfaced on Facebook recently.

I could almost smell the place. And feel the squishy spots in the ancient wooden floor. And wonder how many books I could manage to carry out the door.

Later, the library moved diagonally across the intersection into a trim modern-looking (at the time) brick building, and this old house was torn down to make room for a new village hall.

But this is where it all began.

We moved to this town when I was five, and I can remember reading under the blankets with a flashlight by the time I was seven.

Those two ladies who ran the public library, or the one at church, will never know how much they contributed to my journey into books, my journey into writing. My journey into meeting people like you.

• How about you? What people and places of your childhood helped to shape you for the good? Give thanks!