Going Off The Beaten Path in Steamboat Springs
Sorry for the long stretch of silence. I was attempting to ski with my family in Steamboat Springs, Colorado over spring break. Attempting is the key word here and I will be the first to say that I ain’t good. I am a green/easy blue skier. I prefer to keep my legs attached to my body. Anything more difficult would be a disaster. My husband skis backwards and video tapes my kids at the same time. I hate him.
However, the hate stopped when we stepped off the slopes for our non-skiing day on which he turned into a saint. We were strolling along the town’s main street (Lincoln Ave.) and he went on ahead of me with the kids (saint move #1) after I found something I didn’t need to buy in a little vintage shop. I caught up with him as he was turning the corner with coffee in hand. (He was on a mission to find a locally owned coffee shop and apparently found success.)
Me: “Sorry, I found a cute little shop back there, blah, blah, blah. Hey…where’d you find that coffee?
Him: “Back there in that little bookstore.” He tossed his head up indicating behind him. (Sainthood attained!) ”They had a coffee shop in…*coughing as he chokes on my dust*
It was a short conversation.
If my hands weren’t busy juggling my recent purchases, I would have clapped my hands like a five-year-old girl getting her first American Girl doll. This little gem is an independent store that has been in business since 1990 that is open seven days a week AND open 8 am-7 pm every night. Their web site says they are open later during peak seasons. Shut up. You had me at open.
I would spend all of my writing time in this place if I lived there. The store isn’t huge but from what I could tell, they are good at what they do. They have a whole side of one bookshelf with each employee’s latest pick. Lo and behold! Look who I saw! A Good American!
As I squatted down to take a picture of Alex’s book, one of the employee’s asked
“Can I help you, psycho?” if she could help me find something. Some day a security camera picture of me will be posted in bookstore windows across America, asking patrons to identify the whack job with the iPhone. My quick response-hey, this time I wasn’t lying-was that the author was a friend of mine and I was so happy to see his book featured on the shelf. She may or may not have given me the “I call bullshit” look but I quickly diverted her with questions about the store. She forgot all about my clandestine behavior.
She kindly answered then let me go to wander the store. I may have “oohed” and “ached” out loud. There was great book after great book displayed right in front. Back in far right corner were some gift ideas and the teen section. And the kids’ section! They had the coolest kids section under the stairs with a little hidden nook area. They get all the cool stuff.
Upstairs in the loft was the used books section which was smartly labeled ReCycled. There was a huge bean bag up there and a long counter with stools for patrons wanting to plug into the WIFI. Back on the first floor was a small seating area as well as an area with two wing back chairs cozied up to a fireplace.
I had to buy something while I was there and so I grabbed Tatiana de Rosnay’s latest book, The House I Loved. It had been eyeballin’ me so I had to show it who was boss. I will get to it someday after I finish the other 17,002 books I have waiting for me. Local bookstores make me do crazy things, like buy hardcovers for full price. Watch for me on Hoarders someday…soon.
I wanted to stay at Off The Beaten Path forever. Books get written in places like this. That’s it. I’m moving.
Check out more about Off The Beaten Path bookstore: http://www.steamboatbooks.com.
They have a virtual tour thingamajig that will give you a better feel for the store than my pictures.