Literary London, or what I saw last week …

Street after street, lined with book stores.

Just in case you need a place to sit down.

Reading this book, a gift from Averil. The perfect companion for a long journey, and set in England! Loved it.

Inside the British LIbrary. I could see myself spending a lot of time here.

One of Churchill's bookshelves. When he removed a book, he would mark the space with a stuffed animal.

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19 thoughts on “Literary London, or what I saw last week …

  1. Averil Dean

    Oh! The Shell Seekers is traveling the world. I love those little dings, those creases. Don’t you adore Penelope?

    And look at all those bookstores! As if it my jealousy over you meeting the Duchess was not enough, you’ve got to rub it in with a picture of the Street of Dreams. Sheesh.

    1. Teri Post author

      I carried this book everywhere, all week. I adored Penelope, envied Olivia, detested Nancy and Noel, and really liked how the writer structured this story. Every chapter the name of a character as a way to fill in the history and present of the story line.

  2. Laura

    I’m breaking a little inside — currently being flooded by the memories of my 4 months in London as a study abroad college student. How fast that time went by, how I now feel I simultaneously wasted it and lived up every moment.

    At the end of the semester, my friend told me that her grandfather had studied in London for a semester in college….and then never returned despite always wanting to. “That will never happen to us,” she said. “We’ll be back. It won’t be long.”

    Haven’t been back since. But I will, someday.

    Glad you had a good trip!

    1. Teri Post author

      I understand, Laura. You’ll go back. And you’ll probably see it in a whole new way when you do.

      I’ve been to London 3 or 4 times in the last 20 years. It’s pitiful to me that I can’t remember if it’s 3, or if it’s 4. That’s how little I remember of those times. It seems like I was always in London on my way to somewhere else, for a few days. My husband tells me we once attended a business dinner of his in the British Museum. I know he’s right, but I also I have zero memory of this. I saw the Rosetta Stone with no recollection. How is that possible?

      It’s possible because I failed to be present. That makes me terribly sad. How I wasted those 3 or 4 times….

      One of my biggest joys last week is that I felt like I settled in and took my time and enjoyed every minute, even if it was just getting on the subway or having a croissant with cheese for breakfast. And I remember seeing the Rosetta Stone this time! I even went to the same museum twice to make sure I didn’t miss anything.

      1. Deb

        ‘It’s possible because I failed to be present. That makes me terribly sad. How I wasted those 3 or 4 times….’

        I feel sad too over how much time I’ve wasted in that not present state of mind. So many places I’d love to go back to and have a do over. I’m trying to give myself a break and a pat on the back for being here now. All we can do, right? The pictures are fabulous. I love the Churchill shelves.

        What took you to London?

      2. Teri Post author

        Deb, I was tagging along on my husband’s business trip. He said he had to be in London, to which I replied, “Want some company?” 😉

        It was also good for me to get away after putting my dog to sleep — good to have a reason to be out of the house and distract myself. It’s been a sad time, and the London thing popped up at just the right time.

      3. Deb

        Ah, nothing like a change of scenery and the excitment of spontaneity to help move forward. Hope it helped.

  3. Lyra

    You may have little recollection of the other visits but you’ll remember this one and that’s the forward motion that counts.

    I love the stuffed animal marker. But alas, we are turning into a stacked upon stacks used bookstore at my house. I need to cull the herd but can’t bare the thought.

  4. lizisilver

    That street of bookshops with cobbled entry ways… can you imagine a street like that existing in the US? Never. Street of Dreams is right, Averil, on so many levels.

  5. macdougalstreetbaby

    I feel like I took a little trip myself. Thank you for these wonderful pictures. Yes, that Street of Dreams certainly sparks something inside me. So many Mom and Pop stores, all with vastly different signs hanging from them. They certainly make me wonder about the people who live above them.

    1. Teri Post author

      Oh MSB, what a pleasure this was. So many shops with old books. Some so small, some a little larger (but not much), all with narrow stairs and funky organization, and fascinating clientele. I could hang out here all day, everyday.

      My husband found a group of old Kipling books, all marked by the publisher with the reverse Swastika. Of course, before Hitler took and abused this symbol, it was a sign of peace. Surreal.

  6. Catherine

    I love London bookshops and gallerys and gardens. One of the best things about living in Italy is that London is a quick plane trip away. I remember on one trip when I was still living in Ghana I had a story in a Virago anthology which was in the front window of a shop in Shaftsbury Ave and the ex who was a photographer was starring in a book over the road. Magic!
    And if i ever finish editing I’ll be over there hawking my novel!!

  7. Bobbi

    Oh my streets full of bookstores, how wonderful. I miss bookstores. We have 2 here in my small town but all French so I can’t really get into them yet. I’m a long way from literary French I’m afraid. Thanks for this lovely glimpse into literary London…

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