Today is one of those times when I think of the mysterious communication that goes out when you toss a piece of bread to a laughing gull (I almost typed sea gull, but I've learned that is not their official name) and within milliseconds scores of gulls are vying for their fair share happens elsewhere.

There has to be some signal that goes out to book donors whenever I have attacked the avalanche of donated books into a manageable cart of books.

I was anticipating a large box of new books after being out of the library for two days.

Actually there was a big box of books for the Nature Center with just four for the new book shelf. That was easy to tackle.

Then, when I was thinking I could sit down to write this column, a repeat donor with over 200 books and magazines in excellent condition comes in.

Now mind you, I'm really not complaining, I love getting donations, it's just there's been so little time to work with them.

They are weeding their large book collection and will have more to donate. I told them to please take their time.

I have no doubt what I'll be doing next week. I'm just glad we get to skip the end of the fiscal year book selection date and I'll have more time to deal with donations.

One good thing happened last week; I can now send two boxes of donations per week to be catalogued.

Last week I sent a box of westerns and a box of science-fiction and fantasy. This week Miss Jean is sending a box of juvenile books and I'm sending general fiction.

In an effort to resolve some of the effects of being short staffed, we are looking into a way to have our phone answered while we cannot answer the phone for serving those in line.

Some of our branches can switch over to a recording that requests patrons call back later or call other branches, and some have the capability to take messages.

In addition, I've just found out there is a work assistance program for senior citizens in Nueces County that is being coordinated between the AARP and the city to provide 25 hours of paid job training to those selected for placement.

We will be seeking someone to answer the phone and provide some basic information and service for callers and take over some general clerical work.

I will have more information on this position and who qualifies for it in the next few days. Hopefully someone from the Northwest area will be interested.

Miss Jean will be on her post-summer reading club well deserved vacation to visit her family in Oklahoma during the first week of August.

Usually she takes two weeks, but due to the shortage of staff she will wait until later to take another week.

Lynda Whitton is the branch manager for the Northwest Branch Library in Corpus Christi. Readers may contact her at 241-9329.