My brother found this short video and sent it to me. Luis Soriano Boroquez is a teacher in La Gloria, Columbia who runs a "Biblioburro" - a traveling library from the back of a donkey. I remember the Bookmobile when I was a kid: my mom used to walk me and my sister up the hill to where the converted bus full of bookshelves was parked in the neighbour's driveway. It's one of my earliest memories, and I remember being completely excited by all the books lined up along the sides of the bus. (Yes, it was probably a formative experience.) I lived about half an hour away from Fredericton, and it was hard to get in to the main library. My mom had two small kids to worry about, and a pair of teenagers. Going all the way in to town was an epic journey, in my mind at the time.
But it wasn't any eight-hour round trip journey on the back of a burro, carting 120 books and a foldable plastic picnic table, by any stretch. And what Luis says about it is just beautiful:
"With the Biblioburro, we are fighting what we call the "farmer's ignorance." In a book we can find cities, cultures, rights, duties. A child we can educate today with the Biblioburro is a child we are teaching rights, duties, and commitments to. And a child who is aware of their rights, duties, and commitments, is a child informed to say 'no' to war."
He's also built a library along with his wife, so that someday he'll have somewhere to keep all his books and an actual central location for the children.
Somebody give this guy a medal or something. Better yet, give him a hand.