The nostalgic scent of urine-infested sidewalks. Fear of getting mugged as a student trying to complete her research assignments. Wondering if I would be murdered in the basement of a Downtown building filled with old books bound to eventually fall apart in the hands of the next borrower. Or if not death, even worse...being stuck in an elevator that probably should not have passed inspection within the last decade.

Why, then, does it feel like a little piece of my heart is being taken, knowing that San Diego's brand new and improved Central Library is soon opening its doors to the public?

Guess it's time for the next generation to make their own memories. Things will be different. There will probably be more love for electronics than traditional reading material. The elevators will be fancier. Gone from these future researchers will be the feeling of a becoming a potential victim in a Hollywood horror movie.

One thing will not change. The memories associated with learning. Regardless of the chosen medium, pursuing our own knowledge is a rewarding experience. And that will not change--regardless of the building's standards, even as centuries pass.

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