My intention was to nip up to Woodstock NH on Sunday and pop my head into the Vermont Summer Book Fair at the invite of Gary and Karen from Austin’s Books – as they say we make plans and God laughs. Actually, I think the course of my day was plotted from a warmer latitude.
Long story short: the Fair opened at 10:00am, I arrived about 3:30pm – now fill in the hours in between, be as creative as you want and don’t be afraid to use both sides of the screen. Not that I minded wasting half my day in the car, it was a beautiful day in the neighborhood, NPR was coming in clear as a bell and I was highly caffeinated. What could be better?
Regardless, I saw some folks I hadn’t seen in a while and I STILL found something to buy: Pages of Yesteryear from Newton, CT sold me a super nifty deluxe The Roman Cookery Book a Critical Translation of The Art of Cooking By Apicius for Use in The Study And the Kitchen with facing page translation – which I could easily sell, but I am SOO gonna keep.
I got to talking to Gil Rodriquez from Gilann Books, Darien CT (those are his kids/workers at right) about what folks are bringing for stock. And I tell you, if I am buying things? Then people are bringing much more interesting stuff than they used to. I can clearly remember shows where nearly EVERY both had the same modern first dross that floods the internet. The booths that had the offbeat stuff got a lot more interest. Now it’s the reverse, people are leaving the boring stuff at home. I am not even talking EXPENSIVE stuff, just interesting and uncommon stuff. At this fair I saw vintage pulps and paperbacks in several booths that were in condition grades that were droolworthy. TRY finding those on the internet!
I just can’t get excited about browsing for books on a computer screen. One can only look for things you KNOW you want, it’s impossible to stumble upon stuff you don’t know you want until you see it. That’s probably what keeps me going to these things. The internet has taken the Shop out of Shopping – it’s just buying.