Sunday, August 10, 2008
This weekend I've been on a back-to-school binge. Yesterday morning I spoke to a local writers' group about writing and healing, and about why trauma survivors often gravitate towards fantasy (not because it's "escapist," but because the fantastic represents trauma, in its surreality and distortion, better than realism can). On the way back home, I planned to stop at the yarn store for help with a snarled project.
Unfortunately, my route carried me right past the Birkenstock store.
In a moment of weakness, I went in. They were having their annual sale: uh-oh! Well, I did need a pair of dress sandals for work, since I can't wear Keens with everything.
I wound up getting these very pretty Naot sandals; they were more than I'd wanted to spend, even on sale, but they fit perfectly and are supremely comfortable, and I have trouble finding open sandals that work with my finicky feet. And anyway, every woman should have a pair of strappy red shoes, right, even if they're sensible flats?
Unfortunately, I then kept shopping, trying on anything in my size that seemed even remotely appealing.
In the process, I became completely smitten with these El Naturalista boots. For one thing, they're so comfortable that I didn't want to take them off, even in August; for another, they remind me a lot of some other boots I had once, low with a knit top. I loved those boots, and mourned when I outgrew them. And these were marked almost half off.
I dithered: should I buy both pairs of shoes? I called home and left a mesage for Gary -- who was out hiking, as it turned out -- asking him to call me so I could confer. But since I had to wait, I browsed the sale clothing.
Well, to make a long story short, Gary didn't call back because he was on the mountain, and I walked out of the store with both pairs of shoes, a pair of slacks, and two shirts. I spent a lot of money. (And then, of course, it turned out that the yarn store -- the reason I'd taken that road -- was closed!)
Today, to try to make up for my vice with a little virtue, I packed up seven pairs of shoes, sandals and hiking boots to take to Good Will. Then I went to the dollar store to get stuffed animals for kids at the hospital. Lo and behold, the dollar store was selling seamless stretch camisoles, which I love but don't own in large numbers, because in catalogs they tend to be $20+. Could the ones from the dollar store possibly fit?
I guessed at my size, a medium, and bought two. When I got home, I discovered that they fit perfectly, so I went back and bought all the mediums they had. I'm now the proud owner of twelve new camisoles, which cost a whopping $12 (oh, okay, maybe $13 or $14 with tax). I'll wear them every day -- they're much more comfy than bras -- so having that many isn't out of line.
That helped balance yesterday's extravagance, but I still needed a plastic bin for the hospital toys. The dollar store didn't have any; Ross didn't have any; the supermarket and drugstore didn't have any that were large enough. I knew that Office Depot would have them, but that's a bit of a drive from here.
So I fell back into vice. I broke one of my cardinal rules, violating the innermost principles of my very being. I done wrong.
I went to WalMart.
A WalMart Superstore opened here a few years ago. I'd never been inside the building, and I can't say that I'll be strongly tempted to go back. But I did get the size of plastic bin I was looking for, and the critters have now been delivered to the ED (where everybody I saw on the medical staff looked wild-eyed and frantic; they were having a very busy shift).
And yes, I know, in terms of shopping ethics, the Dollar Store probably isn't any better than WalMart.
I think my vice this weekend outweighs my virtue; but at least I'm copping to it, right?