There it is...the repository of hopes and dreams...
No, not that kind of fantasy. I’m talking about daydreams here, the stuff that creeps into your head when you’re waiting at a red light and there’s nothing riveting on the radio to distract you from your thoughts.
Here’s one of mine and if you share one of yours in the comments, I might just send you a copy of my latest book, Return.
It’s no secret that I love to shop second-hand. I have ever since I was a kid, and the impulse only strengthened once I got my own car and could stop at any garage sale that caught my eye. So for nearly thirty years I’ve been hitting the mismatched racks and cluttered tables of thrifts. It’s hit or miss and always has been. Sometimes I lament the lack of cool vintage stuff that I found with ease years ago, but I’m really grateful for like-new kids clothes now, so the trade-offs seem worth it.
So, on to my fantasy.
I’m in a thrift store, medium-sized with good lighting and a clean floor (this is a fantasy, after all). I start going through the racks and nothing falls off the hangars as I pull and check labels. Nothing good, nothing good, until I hit a possible. Pull it out; a perfect pair of chinos, right size, no wear, quality manufacturer. The next hangar holds a great seersucker pair of trousers, and next is jeans I’m sure will fit just right.
I toss everything into the cart and keep going. The cart’s wheels all work properly and there’s no sticking or squeaking (see, I warned you it was a fantasy). Next is a red cashmere cardigan, then a couple of perfect white shirts, a black alpaca scarf, and at the end of the aisle, a narrow metal mesh belt, exactly what I’ve been in search of for the last year and a half.
The cart’s filling up and my heart is pounding. Should I keep looking or accept I’ve had the finds of a lifetime and head to the counter to pay up while my luck still holds? I’m not much of a gambler, so I make my way to the front only to be distracted by it; an English trench coat, just my size, zip-out lining still in place and nothing weird left in the pockets. Mine!
Now the fear hits me as I approach the display cases. Will I be able to find some cool piece of jewelry to cap off all my fabulous fashion? I peer through the glass at trays of plastic stretch bracelets and trashy necklaces from the state fair midway, sure I’ve used up my luck for the day. But no, I spy something, the edge of something enameled and gold-tone. I have to see it. Wonder of wonders, a staff person is actually there and ready to help and she pulls out what I ask to see with no trouble. Yes, it’s a vintage Trifari dragon necklace, bright green with angry red beaded eyes, without a scratch or sign of wear. It’s only five dollars and I immediately head into line, keeping my eye on the necklace as the clerk carries it to the person running the register.
Everything rings up correctly and I have enough money to pay (again, fantasy). I experience that thrill of discovery and possession that I imagine is hardwired in a hunter-gatherer’s psyche. Instead of finding the best berry patch or tender-fleshed mammoth, I’ve gotten some stylish clothes for ninety percent off retail. We modern human have to take our thrills where we can.
Next time, maybe I’ll tell you my food fantasy. Or maybe even one of those fantasies. Remember, leave a comment about your fantasy and your email for a chance to get a copy of my latest book.