We took a pilgrimage! We had an evening in Portland, and as well as a lovely visit to Trader Joe's, we made a special journey to Powell's Books. It truly is a City of Books. We only had an hour to explore, which was completely inadequate.
I started out seeking a book on women's history. The section was huge, and had many tantalizing possibilities, although one set that particularly interested me came in four volumes, and they only had two. When I stopped to think about what I really wanted, I realized that I was particularly interested in reading about the librarian of Alexandria. I browsed the section on history of Egypt, but didn't find anything remotely relevant. There were plenty of generic history of Egypt books, but I wanted more than a brief mention of the Alexandria stuff. I also looked at their customer computer, but didn't find anything with a keyword search.
Discouraged, I moved on to browsing through their staff recommendations. There were several books on there that caught my eye. But then I found a book, there in the recommendations, The rise and fall of Alexandria. I was surprised it hadn't been in the Egypt section! While not specifically about the library, which is why I hadn't found in when searching on the computer, it's about the academic and intellectual environment of Alexandria, which suits my purposes just fine. I've read a few chapters and am really enjoying it.
When done browsing the history floor, I wandered down to the craft room. The knitting section was so plentiful I couldn't even begin to explore it, but I did find some very affordable and interesting vegetarian cookbooks.
Powell's is awesome! The entire family was enchanted, and the selection was unbelievable.