Sunday, September 28, 2014

So Long Harvest…


While I don’t read as much as I used to I still enjoy opening the pages of a book when I have time and furthering my informal education. The greatest resource for any avid reader is a great used book store and for the last 15 years my wife and I had access to one of the best, Harvest Book Company in Fort Washington, Pennsylvania. Unfortunately, this weekend was our last trip to the warehouse as the store is closing its doors to daily shoppers and transitioning to a completely online storefront.

Over the years, my wife and I have made countless trips to both buy and sell books, DVDs, and CDs at Harvest and not being able to swing by the store on the weekend for some inexpensive entertainment is a little disappointing. I guess we are going to have to find another outlet that will be able to come close to the $2 per book that we are used to spending. While I am confident that we will be able to meet the price, I doubt that we will be able to meet the quality and selection to which we have become accustom.

Harvest was the place we would go to find items for ourselves, gifts for one another, as well as gifts for friends and family. All of this while being greeted by a staff that recognized us when we walked in the door and knew us by name. That may be a bit old fashioned for some but it is a hugely important to me and something that I am finding in fewer and fewer places as stores change, towns evolve, and online commerce becomes more prevalent.

That seems to be the trend lately as I have noticed more and more places changing around me. Buildings are being torn down, storefronts are changing, and some of the places that I remember going to years ago are long gone. Of course with books no longer containing paper, Wal-Mart discounting just about everything, and Amazon providing greater selection than could ever be found in a brick and mortar location I can’t say that I am really surprised by all the changes happening around us.

But, until this weekend, we still had Harvest where we could go and pick up those bundles of bound paper, movies, and albums at prices that couldn’t be matched online or in any of the major retailers around us. Now we will be forced to wait until the occasional sales when they will open their doors again. But no more spontaneous trips to Fort Washington and picking up those last minute inexpensive gifts. Things change but that doesn’t mean that I like it.