AGH!! A gem!! I was looking for something else in my pictures and found this. This is the sign at Hatchard’s Booksellers at 187 Piccadilly London, England W1. They have been selling books since 1797. (http://www.hatchards.co.uk). They are the oldest bookshop in the United Kingdom. Their deep green plastic shopping bag has stamped in gold across the top, “By Appointment to Her Majesty the Queen Booksellers”, “By Appointment to H.R. H. The Duke of Edinburgh Booksellers”, and “By Appointment to H.R.H. The Prince of Wales Booksellers”. This is an important little bookshop I think. Last year I traveled to England to visit my son and he took me to Hatchard’s. He had discovered it on one of his meandering days and knew I would want to visit it. He was right. This was a favorite stop on my trip. I can still feel the warmth of the books calling me. “Read me”, “take me home”, “here, over here…”. And, of course I did come home with a book purchase. It is a small volume, “Making a Pilgrimage” by Sally Welch, a rector, wife and mother. It is a little gem filled with stories of ancient and modern pilgrims, inspiration, quotes and reflections. It was a perfect traveling companion for my days roaming London, Canterbury and parts of Wales. And, it stays visible on the top of my bookshelf, waiting to remind me “that it is the journey that matters in the end.” I return to it often and always with a sweet remembrance of my pilgrimage to London and of this journey called “life”. A visit to a bookshop and the small volume purchased are etched into my “reading and writing life”. What bookshop lives in your memory? How is it part of your reading and writing life?
February 9, 2010 at 4:45 pm
My first memory of a place to get books was the public library. I remember the outside as being “modern” looking. I have to admit that the idea of reading books always appealed to me but I was so ADHD that I rarely finished a chapter book as a child. The love of reading began for me after college and now I have several books going at once (still ADD!). I love to borrow books from my big sister’s many bookcases! We have even sat at our laptops at the same desk and written and shared.
Favorite bookstore – Atticus Books and Teahouse in Ruidoso, NM