You may possibly remember me mentioning this intriguing little shop in Amwell Street back in July. I pass that way often and it was never open.
Well, today, as I returned from the arduous task of collecting a pair of trousers from the dry cleaner’s, I passed that way again and—lo! and behold!—they were open! Naturally, I went inside and met the owner whom I jokingly chastised for being so often closed. This situation will be remedied, I think, and access will become easier.
What did I find within? Well, what I found was a pretty and friendly shop with a welcoming atmosphere. If I understood the owner correctly, the stock reflects the name of the shop. “Through the Looking Glass” suggests a transformed way of looking at the world and the books that he sells all conform to this theme in one way or another. There are new books and what we these days refer to as “pre-owned” books.
But that’s not all. The owner asserts—and I naturally concur wholeheartedly—that a good book is best read to the accompaniment of a nice cup of tea. Who could quarrel with that? So, the shop aids and encourages this by selling tea sets. Not just any old tea sets, mind, but proper china ones, beautifully decorated and of elegant design. I now feel quite ashamed of my poor old tea mug and common yellow tea pot.
Having enjoyed the shop (though I didn’t actually buy anything—perhaps another time) and made the acquaintance of the courteous owner, I could do no less than offer him a SilverTiger card. I almost regretted doing so because he immediately copied the URL into his computer and brought up my blog to see my post on his shop! Now you know about me and my memory: I couldn’t remember what I had said about the shop and hoped I hadn’t been rude. (Note to self: only give out SilverTiger cards on leaving the premises!) Fortunately, he thought I had been fair.
Amwell Street has a special character all of its own and the disappearance of old shops and the arrival of new ones is always a matter for concern, as they naturally change the street. I think the slightly quirky Through the Looking Glass will fit in nicely and even add a little spice to the mix.