September 22, 2009
I love the town of Oxford, Mississippi. It is the home of William Faulkner, John Grisham, Ole’ Miss (Univ. of Miss.) and Square Books, a well stocked independent bookstore and City Grocery (this year’s winner of the James Beard award) www.citygrocery.com .
It is a gem of a town, the county courthouse dominates the elegant town square and is flanked on all sides by various shops and restaurants, many are very tempting.
This is my fourth visit to Oxford Floral, I know so because the new owner David Doran found two Annieglass pieces in the attic engraved to (the recent owner) Betty Butler’s children for Christmas of 1997! The store was started in 1924. What else is in that attic?
Oxford Floral has a talent for dramatic displays, add to it their lovely flower arrangements and it’s easy to see how they sell so much Annieglass. Roger Fargeon, the national sales manager of Annieglass wonders when every man, woman and child in the state of Mississippi will own a piece. He calculates it must happen soon.
My visit took place during Rush week, a hectic time when the female students are pledging the sorority of their choice. Miss Donna and Miss Norma (Queens of Bridal Registry there) needed running shoes to keep up with all the orders coming in for gifts, flowers and Annieglass.
I missed by one day seeing the 2300 roses and 1800 hydrangeas being delivered for a wedding that included 60 Annieglass votives for the tables. The happy couple registered for Annieglass as well.
A quick trip to Square Books lifted my spirits even more, so did the personal attention of the owner and mayor of the town, Richard Howorth. He set me up with some great “reads”. I heartily recommend joining his First Editions Club because I practically kiss my UPS person when it arrives every month, I’m so happy to receive it. Each month a signed first edition arrives, guaranteeing a good read you can sink your teeth into. www.squarebooks.com
A word about Southern accents- I find them delightful and I like discerning the changes from one part of the South to the next. Some accents, especially the men, can be nearly knee-buckling.
Off to the Birthplace of Elvis Museum and Gift Shop…I’ve got some Christmas shopping to do.