The Cinnamon Shops

Those truly noble businesses, open late into the night, had always been the object of my fervid dreams. Their dimly lit, dark, and solemn interiors exuded a rich, deep aroma of paints, lacquer, and incense, a fragrance of remote countries and rare materials. There you might find Bengal lights, magic caskets, the stamps of long vanished countries, Chinese decals, indigo, colophony from Malabar, the eggs of exotic insects, parrots, toucans, live salamanders and basilisks, mandrake roots, mechanical toys from Nuremberg, homunculi in tiny pots, microscopes, and telescopes – and above all, rare and peculiar books, old volumes full of astonishing illustrations and intoxicating stories.
il. to The Cinnamon Shops by B. Schulz