Sunday, May 28, 2006

The Market

Yesterday I went to the local "outdoor" market. It's a lot like the French Market in New Orleans' French Quarter, or like the River Market in downtown Kansas City.

This one is a combination flea market, local produce market, where you can buy antiques, junk, new imported stuff, have your picture taken, have custom-framing done, get spare keys made, take home a new pet, or buy a funnel cake. And that's just barely skimming the surface!

It is comprised of rows of metal structures connected by a single breezeway down the middle. Some rows have metal boxes, creating some indoor spaces, but mostly it is open-air booths.

After a fashion, I stumbled across a young and ambitious oriental woman selling ladies' lingerie. She ushered me into her space, which consists of a metal box lined with 2x4's, with brackets drilled into them. The brackets were connected by closet rods, and on these were every possibly color of bra imaginable. Well, I did need to do some bra purchasing, and had put off going to the upscale lingerie store for weeks now, so I followed her in to browse her wares. And she did have some impressively sexy wares.

She pulled a vibrant coral-red bra with gold embroidery off the rack and showed it to me.

"This your size, you try on."

I was not opposed to this idea, but where?

"Here, I help. You look there" she said, pointing to a mirror.

Before I could even process what she meant (I was still looking around for any sort of dressing space), she had that bra off the hanger and looped up over one shoulder of mine, and was steering the strap around my other hand. In my surprise, I did exactly what I was told; I looked in the mirror.

She quickly positioned the bra and fastened it in the back as I was processing the image in the reflection.

I was standing in a brown skirt, cream colored shirt with a red bra over it, with my husband and small toddler looking on from behind me, with this small woman flitting about me like a butterfly, adjusting a strap here, smoothing a line there. Way in the background of the mirror was the reflection of all the other shoppers walking casually by.

I don't like it when my bra straps show from under my shirt, so to be standing "in the open" as I was wearing a brightly colored bra over my demurely colored shirt was starting to make me blush -- just as brightly.

As I self-consciously refocused away from the background to the chest reflected in the mirror, I noticed that the bra looked good, it fit well, and it was priced right. So I smiled.

The asian butterfly saw the smile and flitted about from rack to rack inundating me with options, colors, styles... and I was still wearing the red bra on top of my shirt. I was perusing the selections and she began talking to someone outside the booth; I took small notice of the conversation and then asked "honey, which do you like?"

I picked out the ones I wanted, and reached for my purse to pay.

"You want that one too?" She asked.

That one? I followed her finger and looked down. Yep, I was still sporting that red bra.

"Oh. Yes."

I began fumbling for the back clasp, but the butterfly flitted over and deftly helped me out of the bra, which she added to my stack, counted, and quickly accepted payment for.

"You come back soon! I have more color!" she hollared after me as we left with my wares.

Some passersby turned to see what she had in colors. I couldn't help it; I blushed. My husband put our toddler on his shouders. "So, what's next?" he asked chuckling.

5 comments:

Will said...

I love the way your blog is personal without being indulgent... I have a site called Un-Made-Up at www.unmadeup.com which publishes non-fiction. Your bra-buying adventure is so full of nice observation, I don't suppose you'd let me have a version to put up there, would you?

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