My daughter’s favorite library is not a library

My wife agreed to bring my daughter to her favorite library yesterday. “The one with the stage and the trains,” she said.

The main branch of the West Hartford public library has both a stage and a train set in its children’s section, so naturally they went there.

Upon arriving, Clara said, “We’re going to my favorite library. Right?”

“Yes,” Elysha said, pointing to the red brick building in front of them.

“No,” Clara said. “Not that one. That one.” Her finger turned left in the direction of the adjacent Barnes & Noble, which also happens to have trains and a stage in their children’s area.


My four year-old thinks that the bookstore is a library.

She also thinks that a town would place two libraries adjacent to each other, which seems even more bizarre to me, but she’s a kid, so I’ll let that go.

But I’m not sure how to feel about this. Obviously Clara has failed to differentiate between Mommy and Daddy borrowing books and buying books, which says something about her understanding of commerce and the transaction of money in order to procure goods and services, but is thinking of a bookstore and a library as one and the same a bad thing for libraries?

Or for bookstores?