I’m not sure if the first time I went to Powell’s Bookstore felt like slipping through the wardrobe. Too many years and too many visits have happened between then and now. But this most recent trip to the world’s largest new and used bookstore made it very clear to me. Since I started my job at a call center my weekend has been Thursday and Friday and very rarely does my weekend fall onto the same days that TJ has off. So I have to amuse myself. And it makes sense that I would repeatedly end up at a bookstore that takes up a full city block. Because for me, books are as good as orgasms, and as rich as red wine.
What’s unexpected is how I find myself daydreaming about when I’ll get back to Powell’s. I zone out between calls, fantasize about what books to buy next. I imagine the long wooden shelves as the deck of a ship that could carry me anywhere I wish to go. When I’m in Powell’s time slips through my fingers. I sit in the coffee shop with a stack of hopefuls, knowing I’ve got to wean the pile down. I scan the Staff Picks with the intensity of a child in a candy store who can only pick out one piece of candy. When I finally get in the line to check out, I try not to look around, lest I see something else I want to buy (and have to smuggle into the house). And when I emerge from Powell’s and am standing on the street, that it’s still daylight is always a surprise.