October 31, 2017

Haight Street Update

We did it!

At around noon today, we had enough funds in the bank to pay for our building on Haight St.  I cannot tell you how happy and excited I am about this.  It truly is a dream come true.

More than that though -- we've shown our city, our field, and the world what is possible.  A few days ago I was talking with one of our lenders in the office. He thanked me for changing the way that people look at the world and expanding what people believe is possible.  I was surprised and kind of embarrassed by the sentiment.  I'm not some big deal mover-and-shaker; I'm just a guy who likes to sell books.

But then I thought about it a bit and pointed out to him that I didn't do that.  Our sponsors and lenders did.  My part was suggesting that the world could be different and that something kind of crazy might be possible.  Our sponsors, and the folks who lent us money, and those that supported us in a hundred other ways, too -- they're the people who changed how people can look at the world and they expanded the idea of what is possible.  And I would expect no less from lovers of speculative and fantastic literature.

I'll have much more news over the coming months but, for now, I wanted to let everyone know what we accomplished.  Thanks to all the people who made a dream come true and showed just how powerful a like-minded, reasonable group of people can be.

In the next few newsletters I'll give more news about what our plans are moving forward.  As it stands, the sale closes on November 15.  Bruce, the owner of the building and the record store, is retiring, which is why the building is for sale in the first place.  He has two weeks after the sale closes to shut down his shop (although I'll give him more time if he needs it).  After that, I'll be doing some work on the place and then looking for a short term tenant (since I've three years left on my Valencia St. lease).  I hope to find someone who would like to start a retail business but who is hesitant to commit to a three or five year lease.  If I don't find someone by the time the work on the building is done, I'll be moving the bookstore there and sub-letting the space on Valencia.

The cafe will stay in its current location regardless of when we move the store.  The lease there has quite a few more years to run and, under Z'ev and Maddy's management, it requires almost no effort on my part to operate, so why mess with a good thing?

There are all sort of decisions still to be made about how the transition is going to proceed, but I'll keep you all up to date in the usual newsletters. Regardless of what happens, we won't be leaving Valencia Street before the new year.

Warmest Regards,

PS  There is one other group that deserves credit for what we've done -- the staff at the Bookstore and Cafe.  They are so good at what they do that I hardly had to think about work for the past 18 days.  Further, they are the people who truly give shape to Borderlands.  I'd just be a lonely guy in a tiny bookshop without them.

PPS  For your amusement, here are two links to the news stories written thus far.



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