The executive of the Hordaland county will propose the cancellation of the world oldest bookboat “Epos” before the county assembly on december 9th.
Epos has sailed for 50 years on the west coast of Norway and visited literally hundreds of small communities, often without road connection in the fjords or out on the islands along the coast. The bookboat carries about 3.500 books and also offers live entertainment for childrens at most stops.
The bookboat is a unique experience if you are a librarian. You live on the boat with other librarians, the crew and the artists or authors who provide the entertainment on board for up to three weeks at a time. You sail in the most beautiful landscape in the world and meet people and see places that you would never ever meet otherwise. A fantastic life and I will never forget my five years with three trips per year. (I should mention that I hold the record for most seasick librarian on the bookboat so far).
Now the bookboat is again threatened. Politicians from the right party, the progress party and the christian popular party (sounds like a third world republic when I write the party names in english), want to cancel the bookboat to save 480,000 norwegian kroner (about 80,000 US$) and thereby raze one of the few cultural activities and public services that these small places around the coast recieves.
There is a petition to sign for all who wants to keep the bookboat floating and delivering library services. The petition is in norwegian, if you only read english and want to support the struggle please leave a comment here on the blog:-) All support is appreciated.