My estate sale habit caught up with me this week. Paragon china teacups commissioned by Queen Mary do not fit in my gas tank, and I needed some gas money. So I took 4 sacks of books over to McKay, and their money machine spat out 50 bucks. Enough for gas and a small deposit to keep Netflix from costing me a $35 overdraft fee.
One of the customers who came in after me said she heard the store was closing. And it is, sometime next year when the new store opens up near Pug's Corner and the Gower School in Bellevue. Bank robberies take place in daylight just across the street from this bookstore ,and street people rummage in the discard book bins outside. I wanted to put some DVDS McKay did not want out in the bins.
"Oh, no", said the clerk. "We don't put media out there. People take it and bring it in here to try to sell it again."
McKay will give you cash or store credit.I could have had $100.00 in store credit, but that was not the unleaded I needed ,so I settled for $50.00.
It took 45 minutes to sort my books, so I sat on a bench and people- watched. I did not venture into the stacks to check out the cookery books, for it is too depressing to see a book I want and not be able to buy it.
People came in with various little digital devices I did not recognize.
"Dude", said the clerk. "You are going to have to clean that up. We can't take anything that dirty."
People came in with boxes of LPs with scruffy covers. The manager was dubious. "You won't get anything other than store credit for that." The LP owners shrugged.
An unkempt older man,wobbly on his feet, came in with a sack of paperbacks. The store clerk refused to take discarded library books from another customer. Against their policy.
I wonder if the move out to dull, placid Bellevue is a geographic cure, with the store hoping to shed the homeless that hang around that neighborhood. And a store that pays cash might be a mugger's dream.
I have since read in the Nashville Post that there may be a coffee cafe and a restaurant next to the new store. The gentrification of everything. But I think I will miss the old McKay. After all it is not every day one gets to witness a bank heist while shopping for second hand cookbooks.