Last year I spend my birthday in Paris. But it is not the Eiffel Tower that attracts me, after I know how it feels to see Monas and Malaysia Twin Tower, I believe seeing Eiffel Tower won’t be that exciting. Arriving in Germany and going to some of the big cities, the feeling affirms that any iconic building is just an iconic building. What excites me the most to go to Paris is Sorbonne University! But that’s before I know that there is heaven –I mean a precious bookstore- in the heart of Paris. It was buzzfeed article that enlightened me about this cool book stores around the world. Buzzfeed is good,yo!
It took me almost one year to post about this heaven –bookstore- in Paris, why? Simply because I didn’t have time miss that bookstore so much. Well, I miss going to a bookstore in general. I have three and a quarter book to finish before I buy new one. I didn’t believe in investing on books anymore, since the last time I bought and collect too much books until I feel guilty to see them sitting still on my book rack without me reading them. The feeling was devastating. Well, right now I almost finish reading Love in Time of Cholera and will continue on Shadow of the Wind. Those two books are last month books that I should have finished reading them by the end of this month, but they are too thick and too complicated to be eaten fast. Amidst reading those books and my study book which are even thicker than those two, I miss reading John Green’s books, I could just lay down, having the exciting three hours and finish the books.I guess I will not go to any bookstore (if I could stop myself) or buy any book (Rookie is magazine right?) until May is starting. Yeah I really believe it took me more than a month to finish Shadow of the Wind, Sycamore Row and Gone Girl. So let’s dreaming and wondering about the heaven bookstore that I visited a year ago.
This heavenly bookstore called Shakespeare and Company. You can google it and find the address and the history on Wikipedia, and make sure you click Shakespeare and Company that is located in Paris not those in Dubai, because they are restaurants. Well, before I went to the bookstore, I went to take picture in front of the sacred Louvre and walk along the Seine to find the Notre Dame. I didn’t go inside of any of those beautiful historical building because I just have two days in Paris and I will not waste it for lining up behind 1 km queue of summer tourist. I think it was more than one kilometer, the line wasn’t even straight!
After crossing one of many Seine bridges in front of Notre Dame i got lost a bit and rest in the middle of Square Rene Viviani just to witness the oldest tree in Paris that was planted on 1601. I guess, you can get lost anywhere in Paris and you will always be able to find something exciting!
And tadaa, I see my heaven.
If Walt Disney had a little bit more time to build a bookstore, I believe it would look like this bookstore. I really saw my version of Disneyland when I saw it. I can’t stop smiling and giggling and touching all the discount books that placed outside of the store. The first warning that B, my guardian angel said to me was “You are just allowed to spend 30 euro in there!” and the second warning comes when I ask to separate from him in that tiny-beautiful-magical-bookish bookstore “No more than one hour, because we still have to see Sacre Coeur!” I just smiled and walk fast from him because I knew that he knew its gonna be more than one hour.
I wandered around just to see the collections in awe, the place was so small until I have to exchange a lot of smiles with another fellow readers that just bump each other. It is so crowded but I can feel the peace within the shelves and books that are around. After reading too many book titles, my consciousness start to work again. I am in this bookstore for one mission: Finding the books that are hard to find in any other bookstore.
As if I get a call from a book fairy, I go straight to the back of the store and turn left to the corner and saw a steel door in between a separate room full of books. At first I thought, it was a restricted area (I wish it was) but when I push the door a little I saw a woman searching for a book. I rush myself in, not patient enough to see what kind of book that has to have a special place, and I see the name of Sylvia Plath, Robert Frost and Walt Whitman. As impulsive as I am I know I will get my books in this corner.
After a while, I still cant decide whether I will buy a book from a specific writer or buy an anthology. But then, B came with big weird smile and whispering that I already spend my time in that corner for almost an hour. And its already our time to go. I said to him with the same big smile that I still haven’t found what I am looking for. I still haven’t found what I am looking for. He then stays with me for few minutes and asked me to go upstairs to see the library and some other cool places in the bookstore.
Upstairs was jaw dropping, it’s a personal tiny library that contain many of beautiful old precious books. My favorite was small bed that is surrounding with bookshelf. I sat there and feel like I should live there. I can’t describe more, my memory was blurred with the feeling to stay there or at least to work there or at least to live in Paris or at least have a library as beautiful as that store.
If I am not mistaken, there is policy that is not allowed us to take picture inside the bookstore. But B did it for me anyway, I don’t know where he found the wall with a lot of notes and he captured important and cute notes for me to see.
After spending at least fifteen minutes in the poetry corner, I finally decided to buy two anthologies. My first choice was the poems of Robert Frost but it was 30 something euro. So then I went for Poems to Learn by Heart hoping that I can learn a lot of poems all in one book. The other book that I choose is Love letters of Great Women by Ursula Doyle. I am intrigued to know what is inside women’s heart around the year of 1399-1917. Both are cost more than my budget, but that’s nothing compare to my excitement in that bookstore plus knowing books that I didn’t know it was exist before.
Btw this post was nothing compare to the legendary story behind this bookstore, you can read it here.
Do you have a heavenly bookstore around you? Please tell me, and I will put it on my lists!