One of my favorite quotes in life is from my mom: "The Saunderses would do without food before they'd do without their reads." I pretty much lived up to that last week. January's been a tight month, bringing a cut in my income. I had planned to treat myself to a night out last Saturday, a film festival and the book store in Greensboro. I weighed that against the need for groceries. I had meat in the freezer, a can of milk in the pantry — I decided I could go a few more days without a trip to the store!
I had my mind set on stopping by Jason's Deli, a wonderful "healthy" place near the theatre. But I discovered that the film cost at least $10, and I had $20 in my pocket. Hmm. I decided I really would rather have dinner and a book. I hadn't interested any of my friends in a cultural film outing, so I had no commitment to go.
Earlier in the day I had become frazzled by my mental to-do list and had rested with a book — Roots, by Alex Haley. A pounding at my door interrupted me; it was the mailman with a large box. I happily opened it to find a shipment of Elizabeth Peters' books that I had ordered.
That night I had a lovely salad with chicken pot pie soup and Jason's decadent croutons. Then I went to Borders on the excuse of looking for Bird by Bird — a writer friend told me I must buy it and read it immediately. Their only copy had a bent corner, and I was distracted by several other titles as I wandered around the store. I sat in an armchair and looked over the choices, devouring part of Women, Work & the Art of Savoir Faire: Business Sense & Sensibility, by Mireille Guiliano. I really wanted to buy it, but could only afford one book this time (the ones I wanted were still in hardback, but I had a discount coupon). I finally decided on The Last Lecture, by Randy Pausch.
It was so lovely just sitting there, looking through books, surrounded by books, a trio of customers visiting nearby, an employee passing through with an armload. A very satisfying evening.