Today's post is a recounting of a tradition in my past... you see, today is a very dark, cloudy, blustery, and RAINY day. As I sat here working frantically to finish everything before my deadline (yes, I know, blogging isn't working. shut up.), staring out the window at the sideways rain and misty road, I had a flashback to 1993 when my friend Kristi and I started a tradition while attending a Virginia boarding school. Every rainy winter Sunday we would get town passes from our dorm (boarding school... gotta love it) and walk the 1-2 miles into downtown New Market. We would wear thick sweaters, stocking caps, and scarves, but no coats. We wanted the bluster! Our trek would take us past the 7-11 where we turned our noses up at slushies, over the railroad tracks and past Tastee Freeze, past the Johnny Appleseed restaurant... but with knowing looks because we knew omelettes and french fries would be awaiting us there shortly, and around the corner to Paper Treasures. Now Paper Treasures is a one-of-a-kind store. I honestly don't know HOW it stayed (stays?) in business in a little town like New Market, but it was a store that sold antique books, magazines, pictures, etc... anything paper.... as well as your generic secondhand books for .50 cents, etc. They also had a little antique magazines section that was such fun. We would browse for an hour or two, sometimes settling onto the floor with a book to read for a while. When our time was almost up, we would plop our caps back on our heads, wind our scarves around our faces, and tromp gleefully back out into the drizzle. Hot omelettes and big platters of french fries at Johnny Appleseed on our way back to the dorm, and we would arrive just in time for evening study hall.
I still have books from Paper Treasures, some with inscriptions in them from Kristi, and a small collection of old keys and other such miscellanea collected on our walks. We would talk about everything from "captains and kings" to our dreams of the future... even make up lyrics to blues songs and plan out intricacies for my novel...Come visit, me, Kris! I miss you, let's do it again!