I have been on two C4L tours and both were inspirational. The fantastic scenery and routes are all the more appreciated on the pace of a bike. The wonderful, diverse group of people were from all over the world and getting to chat with each and every one of them over a week’s time was surprisingly easy. Sharing the many fun times or the few trying ones (thunderstorms and flat tires) as you ride through the countryside ensures a connection and a common bond and when the journey is completed you feel as you have known these people forever, and not just for a mere week. Although I am not a librarian, but a designer, the visits to each library were an inspiration. Not only for my architectural fascination, but for the enrichment I learned at how libraries continue to function as a social hub and consciousness of a city. They are the one common place we have around this world where each and every person, no matter of income, can reach for social and intellectual fulfillment. I applaud the C4L initiative, its hardworking volunteers, and its members in the common goal to ensure that all countries provide their citizens with this invaluable resource…. a library.
Certaines bibliothèques avaient une collection audiovisuelle qui nous faisait rêver : Netflix, mais alors dans la bibliothèque. Cent cyclistes, ça signifiait aussi chanter « joyeux anniversaire dans des langues inconnues, courir dans les dortoirs de collèges à la recherche d’un lit et crier haut et fort « We are cycling for libraries, nous sommes Cyclo-biblio».
My experience with Cycling for Libraries was simply incredible. The best part of the experience was all the friends I’ve made from around the world who share a passion for libraries and the work that library staff do. I now have a large network of fellow librarians whom I can contact whenever I have a question or need advice relating to my job. And by visiting so many different libraries, I’ve brought back a wealth of ideas and opportunities to share and explore at my library. Finally, I’ve had the opportunity to travel across countries at the leisurely pace of a bicycle ride and immerse myself in a number of different cultures. Cycling for Libraries has truly been the experience of a lifetime for me!
Faire du vélo avec une centaine de bibliothécaires et de supporters , ça résulte dans une multitude de kilomètres et d’entretiens captivants. En France, 2014 a été proclamée comme l’année des Bibliothèques. Avec Cyclo-biblio nous y avons ajouté une « Semaine des bibliothécaires »
Le tunnel futuriste pour cyclistes et piétons, passant sous le Rhône et la Saône (à Lyon) symbolisait l’avenir de nos bibliothèques. Y aura-t-il de la lumière (et quel type de lumière) au bout du tunnel ? Quel est l’avenir des bibliothèques dans une société technologique, interconnectée et durable? Des moments de crise offrent aussi des opportunités. Innover me semble la meilleure chance de donner un avenir durable à tous les bibliothèques.
Une image qui restera dans ma mémoire : une longue chaîne de cyclistes entrant dans une petite ville, accompagnée du tintement joyeux d’une centaine de sonnettes de bicyclette. Sur la place du village, sous les platanes: les joueurs de pétanque, les buveurs d’apéritifs. Vin et pastis. Regards perplexes. Quelqu’un salue, quelqu’un sourit, quelqu’un nous encourage. La douce France …
C4L is a library advocacy project on a global scale that connects librarians, libraries and bicycling. Librarians have a lot to say about providing access to information and possibilities that libraries can offer. Our long routes, willingness to ride and willingness to learn are examples of optimism and collaboration. Join us and spread the word. Libraries are not obsolete.
Ce qui nous a vraiment frappé, c’était l’impact de notre visite sur les responsables politiques locaux. Il n’arrive pas souvent qu’une bibliothèque reçoive un tel groupe international de collègues, ça ne peut que renforcer la position de la bibliothèque.
I have participated in two Cycling for Libraries tours, both of which were unforgettable experiences that left me with a real sense of satisfaction at what we had achieved and renewed passion for my chosen profession. As well as being a unique opportunity to travel with so many like-minded people, it also gave us all the chance to make a collective statement about the continued importance of libraries globally at a time when such advocacy has never been so badly needed. Away from this serious side, there are plenty of good times to be had along the way too and I cannot recommend it highly enough!
C4L has changed my thoughts about my occupation and about libraries. After learning to know colleagues from different countries, I´m more sure that we really share some values as librarians, not only in theory or “in principle” or only for the publicity. It´s obvious that we in our libraries really work for democracy and for sharing thought, knowledge and ideas. C4L has thus helped me to see the real values of the libraries. The world is a better place because there are libraries – and people in the libraries who want to do something useful.
Le Journal de bord d’Emmanuel Quentin, participant.