Our first ever in person meeting today, in the activity room at the library. A couple of work-based absences, but most of us made it there in person, with a rather modern dial-in on Zoom by one member. It worked, after a fashion.
Remarkably, a majority of us had read the book this time, and most of us enjoyed it, some with reservations. We talked about the major themes in the book, as we saw them – loneliness, the ethics of “lifting”, artificial intelligence and its role in society, what it means to be human, and the ambiguity of much of Ishiguro’s writing.
As a diehard Ishiguro fan, I loved the book and found it very engaging. Others found it difficult to identify or empathise with the Klara as an AI, although we generally felt her to be more sympathetic a character than most of the humans! There was much to discuss, and I think I’m safe in saying that we would recommend the book to others.
For next time, we will be reading Paradise, by Abdulrazak Gurnah. Born in Zanzibar in 1948 , Abdulrazak Gurnah now lives in the UK and teaches at the University of Kent. Paradise was shortlisted for the 1994 Booker and Whitbread Prizes. Mr Gurnah won the Nobel Prize for literature this year, “for his uncompromising and compassionate penetration of the effects of colonialism and the fate of the refugee in the gulf between cultures and continents”. We’ll meet at the library, all being well, on Sunday 21 November, 1030-1130. Please do read along and let us know what you think.
Unbelievably, it’s one week to go until the Blenheim Triathlon. Even more incredibly, we’re part of the biggest ever team at Blenheim – Kensal Tri – with an incredible 197 members. Between us, we’ve raise £55,744 for a range of good causes across Brent – including
Brent Centre for Young People, Gift Your Neighbour, 9Kitchens, The Lexi Cinema, Elders’ Voice, The Avenues Youth Project, Laurence’s Larder, and of course, Cricklewood Library. Collectively, the library fundraising team have reached nearly £4,500 – can you help us get to £5k? The link to sponsor some of these over-active people is here: https://bit.ly/2VgvyIL
We now have FOUR Super Sprint athletes for the Blenheim Triathlon.
The team page, explaining why we’re doing it is here.
and three relay entrants:
Sally Long 750m swim
Alan Carter 5k run
Lewis Foti, 20k cycle
We met up with Giles Deards, the Kensal Tri Team organiser, to collect our Tri Team T-Shirts and pose ridiculously for the cameras. Please support our efforts! We’re all doing things we’ve never done before to raise money for this library, and we could do with a cash boost!
Alan Carter writes:
The New Library is a Project with a long history which you can read about here : https://www.cricklewoodlibrary.org.uk/welcome/history/
The New Library is designed as a community hub with 2 activity rooms that can be hired out for any socially acceptable purpose. There are bookings already made for the activity rooms and the library space has mobile bookcases that can be rolled into a storage area so the main library hall is also available to be hired for other purposes.
The Active members of Friends of Cricklewood Library have been working for the last 10 years to get the new library open and their efforts have almost got the project finished. Sadly, due to a run of very bad luck and delays resulting from the Covid pandemic, they have now run out of money and needs help to cross the finishing line.
I have helped occasionally, in the past, at fund raising events for the new community library but a few months ago I volunteered to organise a team of other helpers to decorate the library and fit out the bookcases that had been donated by others.
All the rooms were bare plastered walls and ceilings without skirting boards and with broken plasterboard sills to doors and windows (don’t ask) .
Over 4 months of lockdown working socially isolated shifts a small group – mainly 3 pensioners – have decorated all the rooms, repaired the sills and fixed all the permanent bookcases in the library.
You can support the crowdfunder here: https://www.crowdfunder.co.uk/help-kick-start-cricklewood-community-library-1
Good news! In line with the latest government advice, we will be opening up the library for hire from Monday 17 May. While we finish work on cataloguing the book stock and fundraising to build the cafe/reception area, the activity room is now ready for use. We have three bookings already, so if you are interested in hiring, don’t delay – availability is limited, and we’re hiring on a first come, first served basis. Check out our online availability calendar, and if you’d like a quotation for hiring, please use this form.
Hirers should have their own liability insurance, and we will be requiring all hirers and attendees at events to check in for Test and Trace purposes. For an informal chat, you can email firstname.lastname@example.org and have your questions answered.
Would you or a friend or family member like some help with using Zoom?
Zoom is a video conferencing platform which can be used for:
keeping in contact with friends and family
joining in with meetings
attending religious services
Our trained volunteers from Cricklewood Library can help you to install Zoom and will demonstrate how to set up and join meetings. They will talk you through step by step until you feel confident.
You will need Internet connection and a PC, laptop, tablet or smartphone.
Interested? Please contact Annie on email@example.com