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A Trip to the Nation's Capital

by jford22
July 22, 2004

Planning a family trip to the Canberra for a few days involves an enormous amount of organisation, there is the dog, packing, food, accomodation AND .... (much to my husband's mirth) registering some books to release. My accomplice (Sarah aged 9 years) and I decided that some of the attractions may just be the place to make some "observed releases".

We registered 5 books and planned to release two of them at the National Dinosaur Museum. Sarah left, "One Twin Too Many", on a computer in the kids area as well as, "Wild Things" on a display stand in the same area. We sat nearby in the cafe to observe. A little girl and her brother found the books immediately. Discussion followed with their parents. Sarah and I imagined the Mum did not want the kids to take the books, wondering who on earth would leave books around.... and for free! The kids reluctantly left the books where they found them.......however a little more nagging ensued and the kids rush back to snaffle the books. Sarah and I smiled, finished our lunch and headed to our car where we saw the family getting into their car parked nearby with two very excited little kids with books firmly tucked under their respective arms. Mission #1 accomplished!

The following morning we released the next two books at Questacon, the National Science and Technology Centre. Sarah left one, "April Fools Rule", in the cafe area as we walked in and it was taken before we could even look back to observe! The next one, "The Great Shark Escape", we left in Gallery 7, The World of Predators. What a perfect venue for our book! We stood back and watched a family crowd around the book. They summoned the missing members of the family and they excitedly popped the book into Mum's handbag. Mission #2 accomplished!

The final book was "Schindlers List". We planned on releasing this one at the War Memorial....again an appropriate venue we thought! However, this proved to be a little more difficult. As we entered there was a foyer with many people milling around waiting for a guided tour to begin. Sarah and I sat on a bench and placed the book between us. On the count of 3 we got up and moved away to observe. A young woman and her boyfriend approached. They picked up the book and began to read the bookplate. They checked no-one in the area owned the book and the couple joined the same guided tour that my family was booked into. The young woman held the book close for the first hour of the tour, taking a peek inside every so often. A little later she too popped her find into the pocket of her coat. Mission #3 accomplished!

It was such fun to plan books appropriate to the release zones. We all had a great time in Canberra and hopefully we have introduced some more people to BookCrossing and a lifelong love of books and all things to be read!

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