Around this time of year, I occasionally get a bit nostalgic, and various childhood memories sneak in here and there. Last week I was at the Tattered Cover with the small, mobile ones buying gift cards for the larger mobile one’s teachers. The Tattered Cover is a local bookstore chain. The original store I was familiar with was in a fancy shopping area called Cherry Creek, and I would swear we practically lived there when I was little.
(I called my mother to see if this was just childhood exaggeration, but she says we were there fairly often.)
The original Tattered Cover was amazing. If my memory serves me–and it may not–it was a towering bookstore, four or five stories tall, not counting the basement, and it was a chaotic mess. There seemed to be little order to the sections, and you’d often have to explore multiple levels, with their maze-like shelves, to find what you were looking for (provided you were looking for something specific). For a small bookworm, it was heaven, equal parts mystery and adventure.
(Unfortunately, the Cherry Creek location went out of business about ten years ago, and while there are three current locations, none of them quite manages the magic of the older location, though they still have interesting organization and they try to stick in hidden corners where possible.)
There are other places that have stuck with me over the years. What is it about these places? I think it’s that they all have a little bit of magic to them, something that makes them a little different. These can be places you’ve been a million times or a place you’ve only seen once.
I was going to make this a reading analogy, about how some stories stick with you, even years later, but I’m not quite sure it’s necessary. But it’s good to have a little bit of magic in our lives, and perhaps it’s most important to remember that through the holidays, when tensions run high and stress threatens to drag us all down.
If you have one of these places still, maybe it’s worth it to take the time to spend some time there, to let the magic wash over you as much as possible.
What are some of the magical places in your life?