I remember a discussion of favorite bookstores, but I'm not turning it up in Search. Either it was more than 10 years ago (quite possible), or it was part of a thread that I'm not recognizing now.

Anyhow, I buy most of my books from Amazon. This is due to a combination of convenience (the demands on my time mean that I rarely have the time to go to stores unless I'm buying groceries and other household necessities) and a lack of options--all of the bookstores near both my home and work have closed.

This week, though, we've been on vacation in Santa Barbara. We've made this trip for the past few years, and somehow it took us until now to realize that there has been a bookstore right under our noses the entire time (three years ago, we could only find a used bookstore in the neighboring town of Goleta--I'm not sure why today's Google search is so much more fruitful than it was then).

My point is that if you're in Santa Barbara, stop by Chaucer's Bookstore on upper State Street. It's got a full range of books, and a children's section so large it could be a store of its own--or possibly two. We made two trips this week and spent over $100 on books for UCLAtot and me, and both Mr. Sandwich and I were struck by how much we missed bookstores. We talk pretty regularly about the lack of even chain stores where we are, but actually being in a bookstore again was a really special experience for both of us.