Finding Something

on October 22, 2012 in Misc

Well, it’s not like I came across a $5 sketch at a garage sale that turned out to be an Andy Warhol original worth a couple million…

(That really happened to someone.)

And it’s not like I came across a fragment of a lost ancient gospel in a souk in Cairo…

(You’d be surprised how many priceless historical artifacts are found that way.)

But for me finding one of Long John Baldry’s earliest vinyl albums in a funky shop not far from my home is kinda like finding a small, personal holy grail for a blues singer I fell hard for back in my wayward youth.

See, I didn’t have a lot of free time this weekend, but I figured I should at least get in a practice run on that scavenger hunt I’ve written about.  What I have in mind is looking for lost, undocumented petroglyphs, lost gold and silver caches (in the American West, you’d be surprised how many legends there are), and maybe rare evidence of pioneers or Spanish soldiers.  Then there are misplaced or unidentified old documents, diaries, letters and other stuff that have turned up in the oddest places and made us rewrite history books.  Or our novels.

So yeah, it’s a fat chance that I’ll find anything of worth.  But you know I just want to have fun and some adventures, so who cares?  Anyway, when all I had was a couple hours on Sunday afternoon, I figured maybe I should just drive around and see if I got inspired.

That’s when I passed a tiny used bookstore I’d never before seen.  I went in and found in a box of books that hadn’t been shelved yet an overlooked first edition of Zane Grey’s Writers of the Purple Sage.  The clerks couldn’t sell it to me since they didn’t know how much the owner might charge.  I was just pleased I’d found it.

Then I wandered next door into Wax Tracks, a used vinyl album shop I hadn’t been in for a long time.  Lo and behold, the place had not one but two Long John Baldry albums!  One of them (It Ain’t Easy) I’d bought way back in the seventies when I was very young and visiting London.  See, John Baldry was never big in the U.S. and wasn’t very famous in Britain either, even though he was one of the first blues singers in clubs around London.  But I just plain fell in LOVE with It Ain’t Easy and played it to death.  I mean, that white man could sing the blues.  And I never, ever came across Baldry’s albums anywhere here in Colorado.

Until today.  When I proudly bought for $3 his Good To Be Alive album.

When I got home I figured I should at least check to see how rare this vinyl is. Turns out that on Amazon there are a total of 14 used ones available.  In the entire country.

Okay, so this find o’ mine sounds puny.  Doesn’t rate for a real hunt.  But for me it was fun to go out and see if anything might turn up, and I loved how something did.

Now if only I could find the lost treasure of Dead Man’s Cave…

That’s supposed to be a real place somewhere in the Sangre de Cristos mountains.

8 Responses to “Finding Something”

  1. Good for you! At this point, I’d just be happy to find the guitar I’m seeking. (Someplace besides online, since I need to play it first before I purchase it.)

  2. Helena says:

    Alex – Hope you find it. Isn’t it funny what we consider personal treasures?

  3. Did you hear about the guy in England that rented one of those metal detectors and found a cache of Roman gold coins on his first time out? Much of life’s fortunes (in my opinion) depend on mathematical improbabilities that lay people refer to as “luck.” That includes big sales in books, finding gold, winning the lottery, or being born with the right genes that make you “beautiful” and “smart.”

  4. Helena says:

    Michael – If I can’t have luck, then I want mathematical improbabilities to be on my side. And yes, why some books become bestsellers and others don’t often seems to be up to some cosmic crapshoot rather than logic.

  5. I love going into shops and looking. Sometimes I find lots of things that are amazing to me. Congrats on scoring the album :)

    Happy Weekend!

  6. Old Kitty says:

    Yay for you!! So long as you are having fun scavenging away!!

    I’ve not heard of this fine musician but hie looks swanky in his hat and hair!!! Take care

  7. Helena says:

    Carol – Funny what we consider a treasure, isn’t it?

  8. Helena says:

    Old Kitty – And it was fun indeed. Hope Charlie and Gumtree are doing splendidly.