What's also nice are the common threads, that do tie things together. We are all part of the same country. We share a history, and the viewpoints of that shared history from different regions has been very interesting.
|The Indie Store in Jacksonville, Illinois|
There is a reason that one out of every four of the independent bookstores we are visiting on this tour is located on the Main St. of their town--bookstores began and belong in the heart of a community.
A lot of the bookstores have had a cat. Or two. One had three.
Some have a dog. Or two.
Many are run by couples. Or sisters.
Most have been in the book business for decades, weathering changes in the industry, the economy, and the shuttering of other small businesses on Main St., USA.
All of them want to be booksellers. It's what they love. It's who they are.
At almost every stop, there have been Sammiacs. Awesome, incredible, wonderful people...males (one named Casey!), females (one named Sammy, and one named Heather!) (Yes, at different stops.)
And there's been a huge range in ages, which just goes to show you what we've known all along--Sammy cannot be held to a tidy little classification. She knows how to bust out and sidetrack!
The attendee drive record is 7 hours "for shoelaces" and the number-of-books record was broken this week by a woman from Michigan (4 hrs., one way) who had over 40 books (many of them first printings).
On Friday a girl and her mom traveled 4 hours for our 6:30-8:30 PM event, and had to drive back that night because the girl's college graduation was the next day.
Talk about feeling loved!
So the trip has been educational, heartwarming, and fun, and I'm looking forward to the coming week, which will have us traveling through Missouri, Kansas, and Oklahoma.
Can't wait to see who we'll meet there!