Sunday, March 7, 2010

I escaped...

to Barnes and Noble for a little while yesterday. I've always found that I belong amid racks of books and magazines.... As I wander along, I touch a few book covers and hold some volumes in my hands, reading the back and skimming through a few paragraphs before placing them back on the shelf. I admit that I do judge a book by its cover. I love the texture and the feel and the images that were chosen.

I always find myself in the same areas of the store.... I browse the tables where 75% off makes it hard to resist buying something new. I scan the titles in the education aisle hoping for something new and inspiring. I take a peek into religious books, memoirs, and children's picture books, never sure what will capture my attention.

As a child, I had my own library system and would let friends check out my books. Each book had a carefully crafted check-out card in the back, and an index box sat close by cradling the cards that awaited reunions. I imagined owning my own book store one day. I imagined a seating area with coffee and cocoa close by. I imagined tables and racks of books and magazines, storytime.... I imagined The Shop Around the Corner from "You've Got Mail." I imagined a smaller version of Barnes and Noble.

When I was growing up, there were no independently-owned bookstores in my town. There were no Barnes and Nobles or Books A Million. Trips to a neighboring K-Mart helped me build my library.

Just now as I peeked into the green plastic bag, I smiled.... Good reading is ahead, although I will probably have to save it for spring break. I bought Sue Monk Kidd's collaboration with her daughter, Traveling with Pomegranates. As a mother nearing the 50-year mark, with a daughter soon to be entering high school, I'm sure it will make me stop and reflect on and savor the time I have with my daughter before college and work and a new family sidle in. I also bought a CD set of The Chronicles of Narnia. I've looked at this marked-down version for six months probably and finally tucked the last set safely under my arm.... It's a "just in case" purchase.... You know the kind; you don't really need it now, but you might one day. And the new issue of Somerset Digital Studio. It definitely inspires me to play with pictures and create.

But now, before Pomegranates, Narnia, or digital design, I have papers to grade and lessons to plan for next week. But the promise of what's inside the green bag lingers in my mind, the whisper of a favorite melody.