Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Flew the Coop

These frosty tree branches were from a couple weeks ago.......they were striking against the deep blue sky that morning. So here they are randomly adorning this post. (I just got DSL hooked up this afternoon, and wanted to see how much faster photos will upload. It took about 1/3 the time as with dial-up.)

Yesterday, I flew the coop-----ran away from my problems-----for the afternoon, at least. My home-from-college daughter had cleaned her closet, so we headed to a town that has a Goodwill Store. Its a town of about 7000 residents. When I was growing up, it was a shopping mecca, with a business district sporting a Penneys, Sears, Montgomery Wards, Spurgeons, Woolworth's, Ben Franklin, and several smaller clothing and shoe stores. When I was a senior in high school, Mom splurged and spent $50 for my prom dress at one of those shops. That was expensive back then!
The main street now is barely a shadow of what it was back then. All those stores are gone, victims of shopping malls in bigger towns, and economic hard times in the area. There is a large Goodwill Store there, where we deposited the bags full of my daughter's closet gleanings, and several consignment stores. We decided to check out a couple of them. First we went to a large antique/thrift shop which had a sign on the door saying the store had gone out of business back in December. Disappointed, we peered in the windows and could see that the store was still full of stuff. I wonder what they will do with all of it. Hopefully, it will reopen someday.
Next, we went into a consignment shop, which if I remember correctly, is where a children's clothing store used to be years ago. Now the store is dim and little smelly, but we took a look around anyway. I like to snoop for old books and antique canning jars. Right away I spotted a stack of old books, and hopefully scanned their titles. The top one was, of all things, a book of magical spells and incantations, so we moved on to other items. There was the usual collection of knicknacks, jewelry, framed pictures, etc. Upstairs were some more old books, and I ended up buying two.
One, a little book of poetry from 1899, Songs of the Treetop and Meadow, had its owner's name written insided the front cover, Olive M. Burrows, 8/20/1906. The other book is Shepherd Psalm, by F.B. Meyer. It seems quite old, too, although there's no copyright date in it. The store had Christian music playing, but besides the spell book, I also saw a big witchcraft book, rather odd companions to the music. I decided I probably won't go back there.
Next we shopped at Goodwill, always intriguing and fun! I found a couple items to give my sister for her birthday, and a pretty Marjolein Bastin teapot. In the book section, I bought two by Robert James Waller, an Iowa author, one the famous Bridges of Madison County. The movie by that name, with Meryl Streep and Clint Eastwood, was rather fruity, although the scene near the end where she's deciding whether to jump out of the pickup or not, just about rips my heart out, for some reason. The scene that cracked me up the most was when Francesca (Meryl Streep) was out driving a tractor and was able to hear the telephone ringing in the house. Believe me, that could never happen.
After Goodwill, we grabbed a bite at Subway, and shopped some more at a Pamida store on the edge of town. We like Pamida.......its like a miniature Walmart.......but minus the exhaustion from pushing your cart through that huge expanse of retail space, and then way out to your parking spot, too. The gigantic size of stores nowadays is getting a bit ridiculous.
Later in the evening, when I was at home reading the newspaper, one of the headlines concerned a bizarre story out of Sioux City------two young girls killed by their stepfather during a ritual. He told authorities he had been "casting a spell that had gone bad". And to think we saw that spell casting book today in that shop. Yikes.

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