Saturday morning, I woke up with nothing to do until seeing The Hunger Games (reaction summary: guh! in a good way!) at 2 pm. I didn’t feel like cleaning or anything responsible like that, and E was heading to campus for some dumb thing, so I ended up going into Manhattan with grand plans of going to the Central Park Zoo to take pictures without an impatient spouse in tow, but I gave up after fifteen minutes of standing in a very slow-moving line to buy tickets while unsupervised toddlers wandered around me. Instead, I wandered around the perimeter of Central Park, bought some bowls at Crate & Barrel, and loitered on the patio by the 5th Avenue Apple Store. At least the weather was nice.
At the southeast corner of the park, near the entrance to the zoo, The Strand sets up a whole slew of books for sale. With Borders out of business and a Kindle (which I love) in my purse, I’ve found that the amount of time I spend idly browsing books has gone way down, and I’ve been feeling a little lost as to what to read next. Today, as I picked through piles of new and used books in the spring sunshine, I was reminded of how wonderful it can be to have a physical experience of shopping — whether for books, clothes, or other items. To see the designs of the covers, smell the pages as I flipped through them, and run my fingers down the spines as I turned the books over to read the back was a wonderful experience, and much more inspiring than clicking through a list on Amazon. In a digital age, it’s easy to forget how important the tactile can be.