20 January 2018

thrift store gift

each christmas, the girl and i exchange one gift that's been gently used or repurposed. this year, i gave her a spice rack from our community services store, the local place where we have always donated used clothes, books, and household items. i got it at a half price sale, so it was only a dollar. i was thrilled to find it and knew it would look good in the kitchen she had been renovating. 

fulfilling my christmas wish for colorful scarves with metallic elements, the girl bought me this long teal scarf, not a color i'd normally wear, but one that now looks fantastic with my recently-turned white hair. it has metallic threads - and even sequins! as i wrapped it around my shoulders, the girl told me it was my thrift gift, that she had bought it at goodwill. even better!! 
to get used to the color, i wore the scarf first to work, a few hours only - and yes, i loved it! so i wore it two days later to an important meeting filled with people i did not know. midway through the meeting, my fingers found a stiff strip across one end of the scarf, just above the beautifully tied fringe. what was this thing? i lowered the section to my lap and surreptitiously tried to peel off the sticker. it would not budge. i turned the section into my lap and tried to hide it for the rest of the meeting.

that night at home, i inspected the sticker and realized its purpose; i had seen tabs like this on my own father's clothes. on it was a first initial and a last name. this scarf belonged to a woman who lived in a communal situation, someone who shared storage and laundry facilities with others. she wore this to dinner at her independent living community. she put it on for movie nights in the common room of an assisted living facility. she wore it when she wanted to look pretty for visitors to the nursing home. and the tag was prominently placed to make it easier to return the scarf to her should it get misplaced or taken away for cleaning. 

i have tried to remove this tag, and cannot. it must be glued - pulling will only rip the delicate threads of the weave. so i wear the scarf with the tag strategically placed inside, against my shirt and hope that it stays that way. and each time i wear it, i take with me the memory of a w. schoolcraft, another white-haired woman, one who had impeccable taste in scarves. 

No comments: