Through a bank vault door, down a haunted elevator, and we were there. Led by Georgianna and backed up by Garland we made our way into what appeared to be another average library room. Shelf after shelf of books. A table that runs the length of the room, on which several books are strewn about.
“Back there are the Folios,” Georgianna says.
There, along the back wall of the room and around a corner, is a wall of books, all laying flat. Various colors, sizes and bindings. First Folios. I was there.
As Bard as my witness I had an honest to goodness weak in the knees moment. I grabbed the shoulders of whichever child I’d been leading into the room a little tighter. My eyes widened. My smile widened. I whipped my head around to look at Garland, in what I can only hope was the wordless “Oh My God I’m Actually Here” face I was attempting, and then whipped back around to look at my wife with the pure and utter bliss I had in that moment. Center of the universe.
Georgianna had chosen a particular Folio for us to look at – #78. Why?
This particular Folio has a number of child’s drawings throughout. I love it. I love the idea that all 82 of their copies has its own individual story. Also shows that my tour guides knew a little something about how to keep children occupied, always showing them things that children would find interesting (not something you might expect in a Shakespeare research center!) and keeping them in the conversation.
And this was just the first of many memorable moments. To be continued….