“Believe in Your Shelf”


Dear Reader:

I love this mantra for our new independent indie bookstore in town (Main Street Reads)…located on 115 Main Street….right down from Eva’s Restaurant.”Believe in Your Shelf.” Reading accomplishes that very thing… it provides a sense of belief that we can do anything we set our minds to do…with the help of God and belief in ourselves.

Shari Stauch (owner along with family) does believe in having an independent book store and I agree. There is something just magical about wandering through a small book store…a feel and smell of books that one can’t get in the giant book retailers like Barnes and Noble. (Of course even these large retailers are having financial problems with amazon.com luring most customers away.)

I would be hypocritical, however, if I didn’t put my name in the amazon.com pile…it is alluring…competitive prices and two day delivery with prime….Who thought even a decade ago home deliveries would return as a popular alternative to actually shopping retail? Sadly many small boutiques and even chain retailers are being forced out of business by home delivery…it is a tough market out there today with technology changing our culture faster than anything else to date. It is getting harder to predict how long a marketing project will last.

Some things are hard to put a price on… the atmosphere of a small book store is one of these…all children should experience it and come to love it …let it be one of their first remembered “sanctuaries.”

I want to urge the residents of Summerville to support our latest addition downtown…Main Street Reads. I love that the Sauches are already bringing in local authors and book talks/signings are on the calendar…The next one coming up is Summerville author Kathryn Taylor…Two Minus One- given an outstanding review for one of the exciting new authors in 2018 by Kirkus Reviews.


I wish I had taken Rutledge and Eva Cate into the book store and the children’s room…adorable…great books and a talking parrot…what more could one want …unless it is a bird singing in a cage or cat that looks more real than a real cat named Veronica. (If you have a book store one must have a cat!) And so much local history…both children would have gone nuts looking at the pictures.

The (mechanical) parrot repeats whatever you say…even imitating my ridiculous laugh…loved this parrot! (Of course I was told he had to be kept in a separate room from “Veronica”… the store cat.)

An “old-timey” jukebox radio for listening music and another mechanical singing bird in a cage awaits each customer too. Perfect!

The old vintage photos include a visit from President Theodore Roosevelt touring the tea farm (second on the left), the 100th (centennial) anniversary of Summerville as classic old cars parade down Main Street.

The famous original Summerville Arch welcoming visitors to our town and the replica of it over Hutchinson Square now.


As I constantly look around me and wonder how so many books ended up on my end tables…I remember author Jan Karon (author of the Mitford series) making this observation.

“As long as you have any floor space at all, you have room for books! Just make two stacks of books the same height, place them three or four feet apart, lay a board across them, and repeat. Viola! Bookshelves!”
Jan Karon

So until tomorrow…Viola! She’s right! Let’s start making some “book” shelves and go to Main Street Reads and start filling the next plank up…besides we will be supporting the community in the best way possible…showing children the importance of reading!

“Today is my favorite day”  Winnie the Pooh

*Today is the day Gin-g hears back from all her tests she underwent recently and will be given the go ahead for surgery or not… based on the test results. Please keep her in your prayers that her surgeon will have positive, hopeful feedback for her and a chance at a better quality of life! (11:00 a.m. appointment)

Today the Dingle family is heading to Boston for a short tour/stay-over …before going on to Mollie’s parents’ home (Bruce and Marcia) for Easter weekend. Have fun…take the Duck boats, go see the Old North Church and Paul Revere Museum…*Maybe I should warn Boston…”The Dingles are coming, the Dingles are coming!” Make some amazing memories…we will miss you!

Eloise has her first pony tail…she is so happy…which reminds me Rutledge…impress the tour guides with the name of the horse that carried Paul Revere and the muffled oars of petticoats for crossing the Charles River! See below.

*If you take a tour of Boston Rutledge…don’t forget the horse Paul Revere rode in the famous “Midnight Ride of Paul Revere” (Poet- Longfellow) was named Brown Beauty (fastest horse in Boston) and another fact…that  one boat man borrowed his girl friend’s petticoats to wrap around the oars to muffle their sound since the British ship in the harbor would be listening for anyone crossing…which they did… Paul Revere and friends crossed the Charles River and warned the residents “The British are coming”!











About Becky Dingle

I was born a Tarheel but ended up a Sandlapper. My grandparents were cotton farmers in Laurens, South Carolina and it was in my grandmother’s house that my love of storytelling began beside an old Franklin stove. When I graduated from Laurens High School, I attended Erskine College (Due West of what?) and would later get my Masters Degree in Education/Social Studies from Charleston Southern. I am presently an adjunct professor/clinical supervisor at CSU and have also taught at the College of Charleston. For 28 years I taught Social Studies through storytelling. My philosophy matched Rudyard Kipling’s quote: “If history were taught in the form of stories, it would never be forgotten.” Today I still spread this message through workshops and presentations throughout the state. The secret of success in teaching social studies is always in the story. I want to keep learning and being surprised by life…it is the greatest teacher. Like Kermit said, “When you’re green you grow, when you’re ripe you rot.”
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1 Response to “Believe in Your Shelf”

  1. bcparkison says:

    There are so few local book stores these days. Hope yours can remain a part of Summerville.


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