A Luminous Halo

"Life is not a series of gig lamps symmetrically arranged; life is a luminous halo, a semi-transparent envelope surrounding us from the beginning of consciousness to the end." --Virginia Woolf

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Location: Springfield, Massachusetts, United States

Smith ’69, Purdue ’75. Anarchist; agnostic. Writer. Steward of the Pascal Emory house, an 1871 Second-Empire Victorian; of Sylvie, a 1974 Mercedes-Benz 450SL; and of Taz, a purebred Cockador who sets the standard for her breed. Happy enough for the present in Massachusetts, but always looking East.

Friday, February 22, 2008

What $1 Will Buy

I love to shop--but not in the mall. I'm not into the bland and boring shopping experience. When I see row upon row of goods, like the dreaded "coordinates" already mixed and matched for you by the manufacturer, a dozen in each size and color, I lose interest. Not to mention the fact that I had a mother who was terminally clever and could make anything you could buy in a store, much better and for much less. I want to find things that are one of a kind and cost about a dollar.

Fortunately, there's a store for people like me. It's called the Salvation Army (or, affectionately to those in the know, "Sally's"). Sometimes when I feel like treating myself, I'll stop in and see what they've got. An item that I would pass by in any other store, new and surrounded by clones, looks fascinating when sandwiched between two wildly dissimilar objects, a little musty and dusty perhaps, but costing only a dollar or two.

Here's an item I found recently that's just my style. A silk scarf printed with touristy Parisian scenes: Notre Dame, Montmartre, L'Opera, Les Invalides, the Moulin Rouge, le Sacré-Coeur, La Madeleine, and of course La Tour Eiffel. Even Montparnasse, with my old hangouts Le Dôme and La Coupole. It's signed "Nicole de Beauvoir Paris," and I know it's an older one because it doesn't have a trademark. Cost: $1.

The rather startling shade of yellow, the exact color of the yolks of chickens that have scratched outside, happened to match the daffodils on the kitchen table. Daffodils that were lacking a certain je ne sais quoi mais que Sally savait. Who says a scarf has to go around your neck?

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