I love living on the legendary North Shore of Oahu. My neighbors bring me home-grown bananas, I can walk to the beach, and I'm pretty sure my whole town would survive just fine in an all-out nuclear war.
One of the few downsides - the nearest bookstore used to be 23 miles away. I say "used to" because the nearest bookstore was a Borders and they've gone out of business.
We heard that Borders was selling off their bookshelves, so we went down on Saturday to check it out. The place was post-apocalyptically empty. Only a few books left, scattered randomly on mostly empty shelves. I still managed to collect four titles that caught my interest - especially at 70% off. All the tall wall shelves had been bought, but some of the two-sided island shelves were still there. My husband and I picked one out and called the manager over to fill out an invoice. Since it was there, I couldn't help taking the "Writing" shelf. Maybe some of the wisdom that used to be on those shelves will leak out into my cove. You can see on the top shelf the four books I rescued from the ashes of the firesale.
As I walked among the barren shelves at Borders I couldn't help tearing up as it hit me that this was goodbye. There's nothing like browsing a bookstore. I love to pick up a shiny new hardcover, glance at the back, scan the flaps, inhale the first page, then hold it in my hands and consider whether or not to add it to my collection. Buying e-books just won't be the same. I can't say I wasn't part of Borders' demise. I already buy most of my books on-line from Amazon. But I don't browse there. I hear buzz about a book, decide I want it, and go to Amazon to get a copy. If I want to find something entirely new, something I've never heard of, some literary discovery to call my very own, I need a bookstore.