I am someone who loves the idea of antiquing and foraging for old stuff. Notice I say "the idea of..." Sadly, the reality doesn't appeal to me anywhere near as much. I am not patient, I find many "antique" stores either dirty and smelly or highly overrpriced and I seem to lack that commitment to searching that leads the the "great find". Enter the internet.
A few weeks ago, Sarah Bessey, on one of my favourite blogs, posted a list of her ten favourite books each day for a week on a different theme. The day of spiritual memoirs really caught my attention. I am always looking to read books by those, especially women, who can inspire me and lead me to a new way of seeing the world. I scanned her list quickly and immediately, a name jumped out at me. Madeleine L'Engle. I LOVE LOVE LOVE her (or, as Sarah says, "I'd like her as my patron saint.") I'll write about her books and their meaning to me another time but right now, I'd just like to talk about buying some vintage books myself. Swoon...
Enter Abebooks. My mom, a former librarian, introduced me to it. It's a kind of clearing house for used books. It took me about two minutes to find the set of four that comprise "The Crosswicks Journals". I wasn't buying first editions or special hardcovers so I was able to buy the entire set for about $20.
The most interesting part? The books came with interesting things inside. I'm nosy and love a little mystery. The first book contained someone's completed overtime sheet and a bookmark from a bookstore in Levettown, NY. I looked it up an apparently, it's a community that holds an interesting history as one of the first suburbs in the U.S.
The second book seems to have been withdrawn from a church library from "Church of the Holy Spirit" in Orleans, Mass. It seems that's on Cape Cod. Again, quite fascinating. It makes me wonder who might have read this book before me.
The third book was boring but the fourth came with a bookmark from a bookstore in Brooklyn. Again, I found that interesting.