Tuesday, July 19, 2011

The Little Downtown Bookstore

When Borders closed their bookstores my thoughts took me back to when I was a little girl, going downtown to a small bookstore with my mother. She was a nurse; on duty midnights. Back home in the mornings, she'd read before going to bed. She was an avid reader even when exhausted.

There was something about those stacks of books piled on top of old tables and filling shelves in that bookstore of long ago. That place was

part of the community. It was a place to gather located in a family department store on the main floor tucked off by itself. I remember small window panes protruding out a bit onto the sidewalk; making for great displays especially when it was Christmastime and I was shopping with my mother. I don't think I could even read back then but it didn't matter. Whatever book I picked up I'd pretend to be able to put sentences together-and read.

Bookstores, real bookstores with front doors and people browzing and sitting and sipping coffee-all involved with a book or two, are about so much more than books. They are an oasis in this oversaturated life of ours; this faster than a speeding light society. Bookstores open minds and imaginations; expand horizons-narrow prejudices and induce conversations-hopes and dreams. Bookstores touch all five senses. They can turn a stop at the mall into a memory.

After my mother died I was blessed with most of those books bought years back when we'd go downtown to that little bookstore. When bookstores close, we lose so much more than the obvious.

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