Saturday, December 17, 2016

in Gilroy

Gilroy is a farming and commuter-bedroom town in an inland valley about 40 miles south of here. I don't get there very often, and when I do it's usually to pass by on the freeway on my way somewhere else. It's best known as the Garlic Capital of the World, and hosts an annual Garlic Festival, which I avoid assiduously. I like garlic, but I detest enormous crowds.

Today, however, I fulfilled a desire to visit Gilroy. My favorite local used bookstore, forced to close in Mountain View early this year due to rising rents, had reopened in downtown Gilroy. Time to get down there and see what was up.

What I found was a large space, occupying two storefronts, not quite as big as the old MV one but large enough, and more spaciously laid out. So not as big a selection as at MV, but big enough, and largely a new selection. First visits to used bookstores are usually the best; keep coming back, and you get used to not seeing much you haven't already seen. But I saw a lot here I hadn't seen in MV. Our cats found a Christmas present to give to B. and me.

Even more important: they've preserved the old store's trade credit accounts. So I will have to be back: I still have credit there.

But I'll find somewhere else to have lunch. I tried a taqueria that Yelp had assured me was excellent. It wasn't. That's unusual for Yelp.

While there, I circled around to one of the roadside tourist-trap garlic shops on the highway south of town. There I bought a couple jars of crushed garlic, the kind that Trader Joe's doesn't carry any more, and no other markets I know around here ever did. They have chopped garlic, but I prefer crushed. It was overpriced at the tourist trap, but at least they had it, and now again so do I.

Outside of the shop, there were eight - no, nine - nine chickens pecking away at the grassy verge. B. would have enjoyed seeing those chickens. Wished I'd had her with me, which I had been glad I didn't during lunch.

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