We were at the demolition site of the Aurora Old Library at 56 Victoria Street almost every day during the holiday week after Christmas. He would pack his reading material and electronics and I would pack my camera equipment knowing that we might be there for a few hours. Some days it was a short visit, just driving by; and other days we would watch the demolition of the Old Library from the second floor of the current Aurora Public Library. I would be glued to my camera and he would entertain himself with whatever he would bring with him or find in the library. On some days, the library would be our warming place. Throughout our visits to the demolition site, at any given time and observation point, I would encourage my 9 year old Matthew to lift his head and watch the demolition – quite likely the only thing he is going to remember about the Old Library on Victoria Street in Aurora.
Many moons ago, when my husband and I moved to Aurora, we drove to the Old Library intentionally to get our library cards. Unfortunately, it was after hours. The Library was closed. We never went back. Evidently from that point on, my only memories of the Old Library would be as an outside observer.
I was often intrigued by this out of place building. Who decided on the brown walls? Perhaps it was the 60’s style. I never saw anyone coming in or out the building even though door signs told me that there were people meeting inside to play bridge. Eventually I got to see those people at the Town Council meeting, asking the Town for a new gathering place. Their new gathering place landed in Newmarket, unfortunately. I thought the birch trees growing in front of the Old Library at 56 Victoria Street gave the library an inviting look. Who had that idea to plant them so close to the door?
“Well this stinks!”
The other day Matthew surprised me. I didn’t think he actually paid attention to the demolition.
“Matthew can you draw a cartoon for me,” I asked.
“Something about Aurora, if you can,” I added.
It must have been a perfect moment as he didn’t resist, not a bit.
“Ok,” he replied and got right to work.
“Mom, can’t you see, it’s not just the Old Library demolition that stinks. It’s the fumes, the fumes Mom!” Matthew elaborated on the cartoon he drew for me, his record of the demolition.
Anna Lozyk Romeo