Thoughts for Kenya and last week's event

i had meant to write a post about the opening of Madison Central Public Library, and i will, but i have been sidetracked by the horrific events that took place in Nairobi.  if you have been following the news, you have heard of the attack on Westgate Mall by terrorists. you've probably seen photos of the injured and the dead and watched the movie clips of the activities at the mall.  

i remember going to that mall when visiting my parents in Nairobi.  i have even taken our daughter there and i am grieved to hear that the terrorists attacked on a day when there was a children's activity at the mall.  but such is the working of terrorists' minds.  i had hoped with all my heart that all the hostages would have been released by now, but the siege continues today.  i can only continue to hope that the terrorists will be overpowered soon and fear replaced with justice and order.  i am grateful that no one i know has been hurt by this, but i know many who knew someone that died in the attack.  and i know this mainly through Facebook.  i am sort of reeling from how FB puts me in touch with what is going on in Nairobi, but at the same time, i am living far away, in Wisconsin.  

the tension of being pulled by two physical locations and two emotions, one of grieving for what's happening in one place and one of celebrating something going on in another, is very disconcerting but i think is very much what life is.  while we grieve over someone's death, we can at the same time, be celebrating the birth of another life.  so, while i grieve over what is going on in Nairobi, i am celebrating something in Madison. 

this past weekend, the brand new Madison Central Public Library opened its doors, after being closed for 2 years for renovations.  when i attended STACKED, i couldn't quite believe my eyes to see all the people queued up to get in.  the line ran all the way down one side of the library wall and completely around the corner!  it was great to see so many people excited about the public library!!!  how often does a library fill up with hundreds of people?  i don't have an official number for the attendance that night, but it seems there were over a thousand people, close to 1500. :)  and it was fun to be in a space that still smells new.  here are some photos from that night, a mix of shots from my phone and camera.