Trail of Crumbs

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I’ve never been much of a sucker for flowers.

Ultimately they start to wilt, no matter how often you trim the ends. Inevitably they end up in the trash or the compost heap, a mixture of brittle petals and waterlogged stems. Flowers don’t do it for me.

But add a dark-eyed boy in the mix to hold those flowers? SOLD. I mean, come on – I’m not made of WOOD, people. A dark-eyed boy holding flowers is almost up there with a dark-eyed boy holding baked goods (which are the only two things I need to be happy).

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I visited Occupy London on an unseasonably warm and sunny day in late October. In a paradox that is no doubt indicative of who I am, I stopped off at St. Paul’s Cathedral, where the Occupy protesters were gathered, before heading off to Spitalfields (the famed shopping district).
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I feel sorry for people who have normal friends.

I’m sure befriending normal people has its merits. It must be nice to go out to a restaurant without having to apologize to the family next to you for what transpires at your table. And having someone dependable who can pick you up from the airport because they are not, at the age of 40, stoned out of their gourd and watching The Transporter 3 (in this PURELY HYPOTHETICAL SITUATION), would probably save you a bit in cabfare.

But, damn, it must be boring. No giggling until you are doubled-over, breathlessly gasping, “I’m going to pee!” No late night invites to drag shows starring people who were invited to your wedding. No immature, tired innuendos when one of you is eating pie. How sad.

I prefer my company to be just slightly unhinged. Not terribly so, mind you (keep your moon-landing deniers – I’ve no interest in them). But if you tell me your new hobby, is, say, painting tiny little leather-clad gimps into beautiful landscapes, or force me to spend half an hour on the floor of my home while you gently perform sacral realignment on me (which involves barely touching my scalp), or decide that even though we’ve just eaten lunch, some Chick-fil-A  sounds like a really good idea, well, we are probably going to be friends.

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There are times, when I travel, that I see behavior that makes me want to scream. Like yesterday morning, when a gaggle of young, mobile, healthy tourists refused to get out of an over-crowded elevator to make room for my husband’s grandparents (who eventually walked down five flights of stairs rather than wait for the next lift). I actually proceeding to run down to the ground floor to scrutinize the group in search of someone limping or hobbling, and planned on yelling at every single one of them after confirming they were healthy, but I didn’t make it in time (Perhaps it’s all for the best, because I suspect I would have lost my nerve.)

Or when I was in Italy a few weeks back, exactly at the same time that the tsunami happened. And while shopping at the Campo de Fiori in Rome, I saw this exchange between a vendor and a tourist: (more…)

It’s my firm belief that there’s a gene that determines whether or not you like to bargain shop. I happen to have it. My husband does not. To me, there is no greater delight than digging through a bin marked “IRREGULARS NOW 75% OFF”. For Rand, he might as well be digging in a dumpster. Which, I won’t lie, I was once tempted to do, but he physcially restrained me (we were in Manhattan, and there was a huge trash bin full of mannequin pieces. It was amazing. I was forbidden to touch it).

The bargain gene also extends to thrift stores and garage sales, which I absolutely adore, but again, the hubby can’t really tolerate. One person’s trash might be another’s treasure, but to a third person, it’s still trash.

So you can imagine my excitement when we found out that there would be a citywide garage-sale in the town of Jacksonville (just outside of Ashland) the weekend we were going to be down there. And my absolute shock when Rand said, “Well, let’s go.” (I suspect it must have had something to do with it being our anniversary and all.) (more…)