Undiscovered Country

One of the fabulous things about having a messy living space, is every time you clear an area, you discover forgotten treasures.

I recently came across a book I borrowed from a friend, who herself received it as a birthday present. I forgot I still had it, and began re-reading it again this morning. I remember why I stopped reading it now. It is absolutely inspiring, and has a lot of great exercises I want to do. But it isn’t my book, so I can’t write notes in the margins.

So I hopped out of bed, looked at the time and determined I had just enough time to walk down to my nearest independent bookstore and see if they had a copy of it. And grab a mocha, if the place nearby was open.

I got downtown to Spring for Coffee, and saw the crowd of hipsters lounging out front and knew it was open. I got to Metropolis Books, only to find they open at noon. 14 minutes to kill sipping my mocha.

There was filming taking place across the street on Main, centered around Big Man Bakes cupcakes. I couldn’t tell if they were filming in there, or if the crew was just enjoying the delicious cupcakes. A tabby cat was sitting in front of a gated door, and he ignored my attempts to be friendly. Only when a woman stepped out of the gate did he move, moving towards me and the seat I was sitting on in the little garden area that is the entrance to the Stella Dottir shop. Stella designs unique clothing, inspired by the styles of the 20s, 30s and 40s. The cat came and sat in front of the locked door to Stella’s, and I saw someone coming towards the door and open it, letting a change of cat guard take place. It was Stella. After herding the recently escaped cat back into the store, she informed me she was shutting the garden area off, closing the pull down store front gate. Oh, I said, and got up, back to the sidewalk. It was still a few minutes before noon, but Metropolis had its sandwich board out, and the open sign showing.

There were already other patrons in the store. I asked about my book, “making a living without a job” by Barbara J. Winter. The owner of the store showed me to the section, but they didn’t have it. I browsed anyway. It was the non-fiction, self-help section, always a favorite of mine. And I found something of interest, of course. I would be surprised if I could walk into a bookstore and not find something of interest. (In fact, I would be worried if I couldn’t find something interesting!)

Julia Cameron, author of The Artist’s Way, had written yet another book to support creative expression. Damn it, I was going to have to buy it, since her other books have been so helpful to me. “Finding Water” is the name of this new one. The subtitle said it all for me: The Art of Perseverance, something I feel I am very bad at. The inside cover distinguishes some areas it would cover including: “staying focused when other parts of your life threaten to distract you from your art.” If that’s not speaking directly to the core of my issues right now, I don’t know what is. Of course I bought it.

And in purchasing it, I also ordered the other book, all about being Joyfully Jobless in the conventional sense, and walked briskly home. Just in time to type this up, and prepare for yet another tutoring session, and another evening of volunteering. And once the book I ordered arrives, I can then return the original copy to its rightful owner, so she can enjoy its inspiring words of wisdom.

Don’t you love it when simply reading a few words of inspiration on a page motivate you to get out of your usual routine?

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