It’s Saturday afternoon and I want to relax, but I can’t even decide what that means for me today. I want to wander. I want to accomplish something. I want to do nothing. I want to do everything. Then it hits me: I’m going to Gardners.
There is a bookstore in Tulsa called Gardners Used Books. They promote themselves as the largest bookstore in Oklahoma. It’s probably one of my favorite places to go. Feeling sad? Go to Gardners. Feeling overwhelmed? Go to Gardners. Feeling happy? Go to Gardners. Basically, just go to Gardners. Something about being surrounded by old books and exploring the shelves is always exciting. I went there this weekend on a search for some of the Alex Delaware novels by Jonathan Kellerman. The Alex Delaware novels have about 32 books in the series, with the 33rd coming out in just a few weeks.
A normal hunt for a certain book would be:
Step 1. Go to the store.
Step 2. Go to the section you think it’s in.
Step 3. Find the book.
Step 4. Purchase said book.
Pretty straightforward process and you can do this at Gardners. Or, you can go to their outlet section in the warehouse and save a little bit more on a book….and possibly spend hours searching. I love the hunting! This is how I’ve decided to collect this whole series. During one of their sales, I bought 20 books of the series.
Here is the list of books I have left to find. This is my super high-tech way of keeping track of what I should be keeping an eye out for on my trip.
Today I was on the hunt again. I bought myself a can of coke and walked into this giant warehouse.
I spent probably 2 hours in just the front 2 rooms. I managed to find 3 of the series that I need, but I found so much more fun stuff in the stacks.
The "Cooking with Love & Cereal" book was probably my favorite random find. Although the "How to be a Gentleman" made me giggle as well.
There is something cathartic about spending time and energy searching and finally finding what you’re looking for.
In the end, I spent 3 dollars on 3 books but I got to relax and wander and just generally enjoy a Saturday afternoon. There is something in discovering new books, smelling old books, and finding something you didn’t even know you were looking for. For me, that was just some peace and quiet by myself.
What do you like to do when you have a few hours and just need to recharge? Does your city have a store like Gardners?