Most people may not realize this, but Pennsylvania is very tobacco friendly. The area we are in is able to support a number of tobacco related shops including cigar retailers, cigar/cigarette shops and a tobacconist. I bet you are thinking, “But Adriene, why shop there when you can get the newest and the best from the place you work?” The short answer is history. My future father-in-law used to smoke a pipe and he was telling me about a tobacco he smoked years before. At the time we didn’t know if the place was still open. The sign was still up, but that doesn’t always mean anything around here. We stopped by and fortune shined on us, the place was open. We asked about the tobacco, and the gentleman there informed us that it was still a top seller.
I don’t usually get over there as often as I would like. With the many places that I am able to smoke, going into that shop is less about smoking and more about learning. I always find something new there, be it pipe tobacco or cigars. Could I find it cheaper someplace else? Maybe, but I wouldn’t get the stories about why a particular blend was created. I wouldn’t find blends that have been made in my little corner of the world for decades that no one else knows about.
I shop where I work, as is obvious based on the tobaccos I smoke, but sometimes it is fun to look up a place online and take a drive to check it out. The season for road trips is upon us. So light your pipe and hit the open road. Don’t forget to carry a couple of extra pipes for sampling. Just don’t forget the rules of the shops: bring your own pipe, but now your own tobacco. If you are going to smoke there, buy there. Cigar guys: only bring your own sticks if you already have a relationship with the shop, or you want someone there to check it out. Other than that, happy trails and happy smoking!