“Toots” – November 26

You all know that every once in a while I like to share a story, just something that happened during my day. So here’s one from this morning about a delightful woman who couldn’t have appeared at a more auspicious time…

My bookstore is on the Upper East Side in Manhattan, and it is not unusual in
this neighborhood to have a conversation with a customer and find that they are
a Holocaust survivor. Today I met Hannah, also known as “Toots,” a happy,
delightful lady well into her 80s who came in to get a little help with her
Nook. She told me she had just gone to see the movie “The Book Thief,” and now
wanted to read the book. She also told me that she had actually witnessed the
burning of the books in Germany during World War II.

I loved Toots. And I was left with two thoughts. First, who could ever imagine
that she would live to see both the burning of our words and masterpieces, but
also a day when she would be reading whatever she wished on a tiny electronic
device (and she had a very fine reading list!)? But mostly, as always, I am
amazed at the bravery of ordinary people. They are the ones who save our souls.
Thank you, Toots. You just sort of made my Thanksgiving.

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