Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Go west, young lady, part III

Okay, last entry about this trip, I swear.

I spent my birthday in Northampton, MA. And tell me how can you not love a city that welcomes you at the parking garage with this sign:

I decided to do some writing at Smith College. I thought I'd check out its library and try to evoke Sylvia Plath's ghost/vibe/what have you. No dice. I didn't mill around too long, 'cause damn, not as pretty as Mount Holyoke... If you are better acquainted with the Smith library and want to share tips, please let me know for next time.
While on campus, I went to Smith's "famed" botanical gardens. Meh. Part of the problem is probably that it was almost cooler inside the tropical greenhouses. I wandered around, sweated a bit, and then went back out into the swampy, sunny air.

"In memory of a beautiful life"

Time to do a little shopping. I lazily walked through Thorne's Marketplace, three floors of eccentric shops, all pretty high end. I spent a lot of time as a poor college student drooling over pretty much everything in places like The Cedar Chest, which features a lot of body products and home/kitchen stuff.

As my tummy started to grumble, it became clear I would have to go out into the heat and find lunch. I got my ass whipped by a spicy thai burrito at Bueno y Sano. Yummmmm
This guy pissed me off because he was sorta heckling the passersby. 'Nough said.
Let's talk books again, shall we? Raven Used Books, or The Raven, is a marvel. And this picture totally sums up what I was getting at in my last entry about the Bookmill. When you are taking in books from students at five area colleges (Amherst, UMass, Hampshire, Smith, Mt Holyoke), you are going to get some seriously weird and fabulous books. 
The Facts of Life: The Creation of Sexual Knowledge in Britain 1650-1950? I'm in!
Suicide in the Middle Ages right next to Taking Life Seriously? The irony is killing me! I'll take both!
Visions of Filth? Um, yeah, I need to read that too.
After such ludicrous spazzing over books, I decided to celebrate my birthday at Herrell's (damn, they have a Wikipedia page!). This just happens to be a small sundae with cake batter ice cream, hot fudge, toasted coconut, and chocolate whipped cream. Um, yeah. It kinda rocked.
But I still had a few hours to kill before going to see a friend, so I tried to think of any other free, air-conditioned spots... oh yeah, the town library. Unfortunately, everyone else had the same idea. I don't think half the people in there could read, and we pretty much had to all be escorted to the door at closing time.
I'm glad to see the librarians have a sense of humor, but what the fuck is this Tron bullshit on the second floor? Can you see that glass walkway and the books allll the way down to the first floor? It might as well be a rope bridge in the Amazon. Fuck that!
The rest of my time in Western Mass was spent in a luxurious, air-conditioned home. I woke every morning cold and under all the covers *dreamy grin* and got to hang with a cute dog named Fifi and some good friends. We even went shoe shopping. And damn, I would have bought these, but they were just a smidge too long.
Actually, I tried on some extremely high heels and may have hurt my knee. But I've decided I'll do anything for the sake of this blog and your entertainment. My only question now is, should I wear my new Chucks with the attached leg warmers up or down?
(At this point, the poor salesgirl came around the corner and stared at me. "You know this is funny," I said to her. And she agreed.)


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