After having set up a soundproof screaming room last year where stressed-out passengers can unleash their frustrations at a high decibel level, the Taiwan High Speed Rail Corp (THSRC) has launched another innovative service — establishing temporary reading areas for parents and children at each of its eight stations where first-rate children’s books can be borrowed free of charge as part of a summer holiday event celebrating the fun of reading. The activity is already underway and will run through the end of next month.
There are approximately 200 notable titles suitable for children under the age of 12 available for borrowing at each station’s reading area, according to THSRC. Decorated with interlocking floor mats, colorful tables and chairs and cute table lamps, each reading area provides a homey reading atmosphere. In order to make borrowing books quick and easy, passengers using the THSRC book-lending service do not have to provide their ID, make deposits or worry about due dates. Based on the notion that “returning what one borrows, it will be easy to borrow again,” it may even help children learn the virtue of being trustworthy.
Passengers can read books at each station’s reading area to kill time while waiting for their train. If time is tight, they can grab a book or two to bring with them on the train and return them at the reading area, or drop them into the book return box, at their destination. After the activity ends, all 1,600 books will be donated to schools in rural areas or non-profit organizations.
(Lin Ya-ti, Taipei Times)