Wednesday, May 17, 2006

I've been looking for a dress...

for whatever reason, I have felt like buying a dress this spring. I own a couple of dresses, both are pretty in a frumpy, fat girl kind of way, but I want to find a pretty dress. Something young and colorful and stylish. Not. A. Sack. I find lots of things that would look lovely on my mother's friends. Makes me feel old just looking at them. A shift with a short-sleeved boxy jacket. Or shifts without the boxy jacket. Long jumpers, designed for 6 foot tall amazons. Depressing.

For much of the season I wasn't able to find dresses anywhere. None at Foley's. Only a couple at Dillards, but the styles ranged from ridiculous to old lady with few exceptions. One exception was $180.00, so I left, never to find it again. I should have bought it and damned the consequences. One time I did buy a dress that was a week's salary. It was beautiful. Classic. Never out of style. If I hadn't gained weight, I would still have the dress today.

At a certain size, style seems to go out the window. Someone assumes that heavy women want to wear things that are...well...frumpy. Sacks. Muumuus. The snappy fabrics seem to stop at size 16.

So I was at Coldwater Creek this morning (or was it just past noon). Anyway, they are so wonderful there, solicitous, helpful, every person there seems to make it their personal job to make sure you have whatever you need, and not in a pushy way, just helpful. So I tried on several skirts, jeans, dresses ("Oh, I'm sure this will fit, you wait and see.") Well, the dresses I particularly liked stop at size 16. some of the others were okay, but either didn't fit right, or just weren't right after seeing just what I wanted in a snappy celery and hot pink number. Looking in the mirror like that is really hard on me.

I can't stand what I see in the mirror. I think what I decided today is that it isn't the clothes that are frumpy as much as it is just me. When I put on cute clothes I suddenly make them look frumpy. After seeing the jeans I wore today in those unforgiving mirrors, I will never wear them out of the house again. In fact, they may just wind up in a consignment store really soon. When I saw myself in them I realized that they looked awful on me. I thought they were cute and stylish. WRONG!

After trying on some (gasp!) $80 jeans and staring at my still frumpy (though decidedly less so) reflection, I decided that long skirts could be the answer. I need to look reasonably pulled together at all times. I need to be able to take clients out on a moments notice, and who wants a realtor who looks like she got dressed in the rummage room at the Red Cross Shelter?

Anyway, I bought two new skirts that can be dressed up or down (and by the way look perfect with my white sandals), both look great with my denim jacket, and I also bought a crisp, white blouse with a self-belted tie (that doesn't accurately describe it, but oh well.) I feel more pulled together and confident just thinking about wearing my new outfit tomorrow.

If only I could find more simple, classy pieces, perhaps I would be able to walk out the door feeling good every day.

Anyway, I drove to Longmont to pick up permits for a project up there. Traffic was a nightmare getting through Denver, so I didn't get there until 4:30-4:45. I refused to head back through Denver at that hour, so decided to have dinner up there, see a bit more of Longmont and head back when traffic died down a bit. The nice lady in the permit department said to head down to the end of 3rd, take a left on Hover and I would find myself in an area with lots of "eateries". After taking a half hour or so in a used bookstore, I did just what she suggested, passing several promising looking places along the way. Following her directions I suddenly found myself in a newer section of Longmont. Chain stores and chain restaurants everywhere. I was so disappointed! "Eateries" conjurs up small family owned cafes, locally owned restaurants in quaint locations, not McDonalds, Panera Bread and the like. I think I made the best of it by stopping at "Noodles". I had never been there and had a great Thai noodle dish that was quite tasty, even if the decor was standard, the service was okay, and the screaming kids were allowed to continue their tirades.

I don't object to chain stores and restaurants. Target is great for shampoo, cleaners, dog food, small appliances, etc., and Outback Steakhouse has a great salmon, but I am always disappointed when I travel even a couple of hours only to find exactly what I have at home. Even at home I like to try local places whenever possible. Roman Villa is great (though their salad is not worth eating). I want to try a little place that boasts "European" food in paint on their windows. I like Trivelli's. I love King's Chef Diner and the Corner Cafe, El Tesoro and Guiseppe's. Chains aren't a bad thing, but they don't feel personal.

Anyway, I got over my disappointment, bought some books at Borders (and the used bookstore), picked up a iced mocha at Seattle's Best, and got back on the road.

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