A new bookseller is about to arrive in the lilac box, there are just a few days left, but am I ready?
I thought and created my small bookcase alone, almost 6 years ago now and I have always “managed it my way”.
This allowed me to use the time at my disposal as I thought best, with no people to account for except myself or the customer who was eventually waiting for the booked book.
I opened in my own time, choosing what and who to prioritize each day, perhaps neglecting the stack of invoices to register for that extra chat with a friend or reader.
However, it happens that the course of things changes, that new projects arrive and that there is a need to change or at least to modify a little what has been created up to now. Change has always frightened me and at the same time stimulated a lot, otherwise in 2010 I would never have given up a steady job to follow this crazy lilac dream.
A microcosm has been created where now everyone calls each other by name, where if someone is going shopping in front of the bookstore he asks me if he needs anything; where on Friday, the world falls, we meet to toast the arrival of the weekend (which we then toast after 19.00 also on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays, is another story, she will find out for herself).
I will have to do everything to make her feel at ease, I will have to get her used to Mamma Rosa’s schiscette (which are more like a Christmas lunch given the amount of food she can only produce for lunch).
I will have to tell her that some people say goodbye from the window without ever entering, but happy to find us still open and that I reply with a smile to their greeting because that’s okay.
I will have to explain to you where you can buy the scratch-offs and where the labor cooperative is located so as not to be caught unprepared.
I will have to tell you about the phone calls we receive because they mistake us for the online book printing service.
And that no Madam, I cannot forward the phone call to the competent office, we have nothing to do with “my book”; I’m sorry you don’t like the layout, but I can’t help you
I’ll have to tell her about the customers who place their orders on the doorstep of the bookshop while still riding their bicycle.
I’ll have to tell her about the “I’ll be right back” sign that we can use whenever we want to disconnect for five minutes.
I’ll have to tell her about those days I listen to Tom Waits on a loop.
I’ll have to tell her that when my granddaughters arrive, they play booksellers and we will have to pretend to be customers.
I’ll have to tell her that my mom has fixed up the warehouse so she can find it in order.
I’ll have to tell her that when I register the “good first” from my cell phone I let everyone out because I’m ashamed.
I’ll have to tell her that when the weather comes, we like to let our stories be heard on the street …
I’ll have to tell her that ours is an extended family and that we don’t need laws, decrees and approvals to feel like one.
I will have to tell her about my weaknesses so I will seem less crazy than I am.
And finally, I will tell her about my favorite book, to play cards uncovered and to reveal the most intimate part of me.
A new chapter is about to be written and I am no longer in my skin.
I tell you: “Beware of these two”, you will read some good ones.