|Otter Creek Used Books - Middlebury VT|
I especially liked some of the walk-in closets that featured various categories, such as gardening and antiquarian. I found a signed copy of Bookbanning in America by William Noble. It was a bargain, which I confirmed on the Internet when I got home from vacation. I also found The Path to Power by Margaret Thatcher for $5. This book is her account of her personal life and how she became involved in politics. Reviewers claim it’s better than her book, The Downing Street Years. I’ll keep my eyes open for that one too.
Further up Route 7 about two miles was Monroe Street Books. The warehouse appearance, both outside and inside, seems appropriate as the shop is co-located with a storage locker company. It appears that the biggest customer is the book shop. Over 80,000 books are stacked on shelves so high you need a ladder to get up and read the top rows. I found Robert Dallek’s Nixon and Kissinger for a reasonable price and it turned out today all political books were on sale with an extra 25 percent discount. Dallek’s known for his writing about Kennedy, Johnson, Reagan and Roosevelt. I can’t wait to read this one.
Time for Lunch
I had to promise my wife that the next stop would include lunch. So, we headed to Vergennes and the 3 Squares Café, still on Route 7. This place was classic small town Main Street café. The tables don’t match. The chairs don’t match. The open kitchen behind the deli-style glass front counter gives the impression of a cafeteria, delicatessen, coffee shop and bistro, all in one. Don’t forget the local brewed beer. And I didn’t. It was great. So were the sandwiches. When my wife ordered the Mimosa, we saw the waitress run down the street to buy some Champagne. The drink came in a tall water glass instead of the traditional six ounce flute. The freshness of the ingredients and the presentation was gourmet, without the gourmet price. It’s a definite repeat stop for us.
Alas, there did not appear to be a book shop, but along Main Street one of the shops, which appeared to be a consignment place, had a sign declaring books by the pound. They were selling books by their weight. The price was two pounds of used books for a dollar? This I had to see. And sure enough, stacked up on the floor, tables, shelves and everywhere they could find a spot were books. And in the front window was a scale for you to determine how many pounds of books you were hauling.
It turns out we were in the Sweet Charity resale shop. Proceeds from the shop support families in need locally. Their website is sweetcharityVT.com. Their motto is “if you are downsizing keep us in mind.” I don’t know if the books are a one-time event, or if they sell books on a regular basis. But, if it goes on regularly, it’s a great place for bargains, while doing something helpful at the same time. I took quite a heavy load out myself, including Lake Wobegon Days by Garrison Keillor and David Brinkley, a Memoir.
Full of pastrami, beer, and books, we took off from Vergennes toward Shelburne, about 20 minutes further up Route 7. In Shelburne, we stopped at the Flying Pig Bookstore, which is in the same building as the Bearded Frog Bar and Grill. You have to give them credit for two eclectic retail names. Flying Pig and Bearded Frog?