I was wrong of course. I wasn't going to find The Vinegar Works for cheaper. And like most things the money did not really matter. With each step up the street to find my wife and friends, the book became more and more mine. By the time we hugged our friends good-bye for the third time, I should have walked back across the street to save myself the eventual postage I would pay a week later.
In the two weeks that followed I built a list of Crime Fiction books I planned to procure and picked a Gorey or two from his daunting catalog too focus my attention. Obviously, the next logical step was the Pasadena Convention Center. It had been a good long while since I had been on the floor of a proper book fair. Eleven of the thirteen years I lived in Rochester I went to the Rochester Antiquarian Book Fair. More than half those years I was able to survey the complete run of booksellers in fifteen minutes, and leave soon after. I do not want to bad mouth ROC too much. A few of those years I walked out the door with some treasure.
The Pasadena Convention Center was immediately different. It only took a few dealers to yield treasure. Expensive, out of reach, treasure. Lovely books. About Eighty percent of the way through the floor, I happened upon my consolation prize, A Morning for Flamingo's by James Lee Burke's. Not a bad consolation mind you, it was on the list. And at $50 it meant that between this and the Gorey books I was would be spending North of $300 on books this month. Then, I walked into another booth and nearly lost my mind.