I want to share a small story with you all.
Please bear with me. I may make grammar errors, as I am rather emotional.
This small store here, Eliot’s Bookshop, was my Hogwarts Library. That is the best way, nowadays, that I can express what this shop means to me. (yes, I am aware that Hogwarts didn’t exsist back then but, if you know the story, then you understand my meaning.)
I first met, Paul Panayiotidis several years ago, when I was a young lady, struggling through my life.
This was long before my children were born, before I knew who I was. While I was lost, and alone. Scared of everything.
I was living in a shelter, and attending group support at the Young Streen Mission, when one of the counslors took me to Paul’s shop, for a reward for completing a task. I liked to read, and this was a postive reenforncement.
So, the counslor intoduced me to Paul, and he and I looked around for a book for me.
You may find this funny but, I chose Anne of Green Gables by, Lucy Maud Montgomery.
I read that book so much, that by some point, it began falling apart, and I wanted to get another book, so I went back, and Paul allowed me to pick another book.
I didn’t have money, as I said, I was living in a shelter. I had made many mistakes, and yet here was this man, that took pity on a young girl that loved to read.
There were times, I would just go to the store and read in the aisles.
I would go to school, then my free time, I would go to the shop and read.
I since moved away, and grew up, got married, had a family, and I would not say, “forgot” about Paul and his shop but, they took their place in my memories. And I moved on.
It’s strange, and sad what brings those memories to the surface.
Paul Panayiotidis is basically being forced to close, Eliot’s Bookshop.
He, like many other small business owners, will be unable to pay the extortionate tax increases that are coming in the very near future.
Now because of this, the doors will be closing.
All those memories of a nice man, in a booksop came flooding when my cousin Brandon reposted a post from another man named, Phlip Arima talking about how the store is in fact closing, and there is a special sale happening.
This is the post, word for word.
Eliot’s Bookshop is closing. Paperback pocket books are $2. Trade paperbacks are $3. All hardcovers are $4 (regardless of size). This includes art books.
Paul has been selling used books on Yonge Street for 40 years. He has three floors of books he has to get rid of by the end of the month. He has not advertised this sale, and is relying on word-of-mouth to let people know about it. So, please share this post.
584 Yonge Street (@ Wellesley)
Hours: Mon 11-6; Tues-Sat 11-7; Sun 12 – 5
Words cannot describe my feelings right now.
I can only imagine the stress and heartache that Paul is facing right now.
I wish I had the finances to go and buy him out! If only to give another young person the experience that Paul had given me.
With tears threatening to wear a path down my face, I ask you, even if you do not live in Toronto, that maybe, you could share this post on your social media, so that maybe one of your friends, or family could visit Eliot’s before the chance has passed.
I want to be clear… Paul and I did not keep in contact. In the grand scheme of things, he likely doesn’t even remember the scrawny homeless girl in his shop but, I remember him, and because he was a man, that was good to me without reason, and gave me a memory.. heck, gave me memories, that I can cherish, and share with my children and pass along an experience to share with all of you, this is why I want to rally for him.
I hope that something changes. I hope for a miracle, something that will save the shop. Those books, hold dreams, and wishes, and adventures… Things you, and your family, and friends, and my family could latch on too and broaden our minds, and souls… A miracle is needed…. and if not a miracle, at least a send-off.
And amazingly beautiful send off for, Paul and Eloit’s Bookshop.
Please, share this post.
And Paul? If you somehow see my post…
You inspired me.
I found a gallery of the store!! Have a look!