Song…for the moment: “Fools,” The Dodos
Picture…for the moment:
Thought…for the moment:
I’ve been finding myself a little, well, bored lately. With work not being guaranteed as a substitute and babysitting usually only happening for a few hours in a given day, I’ve found myself with quite a bit of free time…much more than I would like. So with that free time I’ve been catching up on my leisurely reading. Recent reads include:
Eat Pray Love, by Elizabeth Gilbert
Driving with Dead People, by Monica Holloway
Running with Scissors, by Augusten Burroughs
Reread half of the Little House on the Prairie series by Laura Ingalls Wilder
And I’m currently on…A Long Way Gone, by Ishmael Beah
As well as reading books, I especially enjoy spending time in bookstores. And this past weekend I was more than happy to go to City Lights Books in San Francisco. City Lights is a “literary landmark” known for the Beatniks, or Beats. The Beats “legacy of anti-authoritarian politics and insurgent thinking continues to be a strong influence in the store, most evident in the selection of titles” (http://www.citylights.com/). City Lights is also recognized for it’s great Beatnik poetry section and is considered to be one of few truly great independent bookstores.
Walking into the store, I was greeted by that paper smell and rows upon rows, and shelves upon shelves of books…SO many books! They are all stacked side-by-side, the way in which you really have to piece through them to find what you want or stumble on the unexpected. The rows are set up close together so you have to snake around people to get where you want, just like high school when cliques clogged the hall in between classes and getting around everyone became an art before the bell rang. Upstairs is the poetry room, where you find corners to sit and read political banter in prose from the Beats. Downstairs is a great non-fiction section with an even more maze-like way of getting around. I immediately fell in love with their children’s section. Everyone who knows me understands my enjoyment of children’s stories and has probably experienced me reading them a book or two from my entire bookcase dedicated to kids books. Here I found a series of books I know I should own. I’m not quite sure why I haven’t found these before because they have been around for quite some time. They are children’s travel books by Miroslav Sasek. Beautiful illustrations accompany unique cultural tidbits of various cities and countries around the world. I of course picked up the one on London and have since ordered it.
Reading is an amazing thing that simply uses paper, ink and our minds to realize more than we can imagine on our own. I haven’t been doing it enough, so I’m happy for this free time to see more than just with my eyes.
If you would like to visit City Lights, the address is:
261 Columbus Avenue at Broadway,
San Francisco, CA 94133
Phone: (415) 362-8193
Open daily 10 am to midnight