Library exec gives free books to electrician browsing book sale

January 20, 2023 - 2:43 PM
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John Silva_Facebook
Rudy Guballo reading books in the books sale section of the Ortigas Foundation Library in this photo reposted by the library from executive director John Silva's Facebook posted on Jan. 10, 2023 (Facebook/Ortigas.Foundation via John Silva)

“Very rare.”

A library executive admired a safety officer who kept coming back to their book sale section and showing an interest in literary books.

John Silva, executive director of the Ortigas Foundation Library, shared the story of how he first noticed Rudy Guballo, an electrician, scouring through their books.

“A rare man who loves to read literature,” he said on Facebook on January 10. He accompanied his post with a picture of Guballo at the site.

“I noticed this man burrowing through our box of free books and then scrounging about in the book sale section. He came into the library to pay for his purchases. I noticed that they were literary books, not romance novels, or self-help, or manuals,” Silva said.

He added that Guballo returned later that day, selected more books and reserved them for purchase.

“His uniform was that of an electrician working on the sixth floor of the new mall building. His demeanor was that of the lowest ranking of electricians,” the library executive commented.

Silva said that Guballo’s love for literature “warmed his heart.”

He then told his staff that the safety officer’s reserved books would be “free.”

“And in the future, any books he desired that were literary in nature would also be given for free and not for resale!” Silva narrated.

Guballo went back to pay for his reserved books but after hearing that it was free for him, he “sported the biggest smile” that the library executive had seen.

“This is my way of thanking the many donors to our Ortigas Library book drive which we either keep for our collection or share with other libraries in the country,” Silva said, explaining his decision to allow Guballo to have the literary books for free.

Silva’s Facebook post has earned 3,900 likes and reactions and 1,000 shares so far.

“For me, it was very important to bring up the whole notion of somebody really excited about the books. A young man, not on his cellphone. Parang very rare eh,” Silva said in an interview with One News.

Meanwhile, Guballo said that he would also give some books he has received from the library executive to the youth in his area.

The electrician explained that he is fond of reading books, especially literary books written by Filipinos. He also said it’s his hobby to browse books at bookshops.

“Gusto ko lang po ipabatid sa ating mga nakababatang indibidwal ‘yung kahalagahan ng pagbabasa at pagpili ng mga tunay na libro,” Guballo said in an interview.

“Bagamat advanced na ‘yung technology natin, ‘yung teknolohiya natin mataas, naniniwala pa rin ako, iba pa rin ‘yung yaman na nakukuha sa pagbabasa,” he added.

The Ortigas Foundation Library has over 24,000 volumes of books, maps, photographs and documents, including records from Japanese wartime trials.

It also houses the extremely rare gallery proofs of military officer John R. M. Taylor’s “Insurgent Records,” one of the most extensive archives of captured Filipino revolutionary documents.

The library is located on the second floor of the McKinley Parking Building at Greenhills Shopping Center.