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Location: Dublin, Republic of, Ireland

Friday, 19 October 2007

Yesterday, I strode off into a secondhand bookshop, pretty much drunk. I had a blissful time in Ripping Yarns, a quaint shop on Archway Road, just opposite the Highgate train station in greater London.
It isn't bigger than a storeroom but for the nostalgic bookworm feeling still sane and yearning for dog-eared train books, Blyton, ancient comics and some thoroughly obscure classics - how I savoured the intrigue of an old forgotten title like Fandango Dark with relish - one would be well rewarded with a large colourful library and for me; an unsuspecting cardbox box outside the door where I chose and clutched a handful of Sexton Blake thrillers as if my life depended on it.
It was not without a dreamlike air that I later marched into a deli - still on Archway Road - for 2 generous glasses of red wine swallowed straight down - and a drink which had the power to knock me out for six in the blink of an eye. I was immediately happy and in love with the whole world.
My hedonism I daresay was eternal.
I tried to get to the station and thought I may have toppled a couple of times. I smiled at everyone. The watching traffic stared warily.
I then stumbled with some delight into another haven - a bookshop that served the wellbeing of an individual, one that fought for the state of a sound mental health. The Mind Shop, still on Archway Road. Oops...they must never know and you must never tell especially that I plan on going back, that I couldn't walk in a straight line at the time but just pretended...
I attempted to cover my hiccup with dismal failure.
Lots of exciting translated classics - disguising a surprise treasure and so I picked up my Polish tale and stumbled yet again, almost falling to the floor.
I held on shamelessly and with dramatic pleasure, to the shelves.
I also chose a book of American poetry, printed 30 years ago - the verses still beautiful to the ear. A bulk of its literature cost just £1.
My finds were a steal even as I struggled to stay on my seat on the District Line, my own state of being, a comical battle of wills.

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