Yesterday, David had the day off from school. He has been wanting to visit a new store that has been built in my old hometown, so we made the trip over by car, ferry and floating bridge to Bellevue. UGH. I wish I liked the town, but I don't anymore. It wasn't my favorite place growing up, either, but nowadays it is barely recognizable as same city in which I grew up. Too many cars, too many high-rises, too much money, too fast-paced, too much STUFF for my taste.
What was once a nice, drive-around, walk-around, small outdoor shopping mall with a Newberry's, A&P Market, local drugstore, clinic, a couple of restaurants, a shoe store, JC Penney's, Frederick & Nelson's, and (much later), Nordstrom, has become a flashy, smooth, high-end, all-indoor, extravaganza-mall with huge parking garages all around it. David loves it. I can hardly stand it.
We went to some of the stores in the mall that he wanted to visit (Nordstrom, Burberry, Oakley, Bose) and to a ski store, where we bought tickets to the new Warren Miller Ski film, and David found a ski parka that he liked a lot.
The main attraction for him, yesterday, was the brand-new Neiman Marcus store that was built into a new, luxury-goods mall, up the road from the existing mega-extravaganza Bellevue Square Mall.
I have to admit that I liked this smaller mall better than the larger one. We didn't get through all of it, since David's focus was on Neiman's. He walked right into the menswear department. The Loro Piana part of the menswear department. Do you know what Loro Piana is? Loro Piana is one of the premier manufacturers of cashmere and wool clothing in the world. IN THE WORLD, I said. Mostly handmade, with fabulous quality and details that most of us are not accustomed to seeing, much less owning, in our apparel. And, of course, David, with his incredible, laser-like ability to spot and form a bond with only the finest, loves their clothes. LOVES.THEIR.CLOTHES.
He bought one of their cotton sweaters (on sale) in Paris this summer. He was wearing it yesterday.
Have I mentioned that David loves coats? He fell immediately and deeply "in lust" with a coat that retails for $3,195.00. Not a suit coat, but outerwear. I'm sure it would last for years, and never go out of style. But by purchasing a coat at that price, he would have to wait a much longer time - or start all over again - to save enough money for a car. I mean, he'd be taking the bus in a very fancy coat, for a long time.
David put that coat on 2 or 3 times, modeled it, and really, really wanted it. I wish I had taken a photo of him in it. And in that moment, I wished that I had that kind of money to spend on a coat, but I don't.
I also don't want to buy an item like that for him while he's still growing.
And there is something in me that wants to let him feel the longing for it, for a while. If he really wants it, he might work some extra hours this winter, or look for a good next-step-down alternative, or stalk the item in case it ever goes on sale (not too likely)!
But it was a wonderful experience, to see him recognize beauty and craftsmanship, to hear all about the company and its hand-manufacturing traditions from a very well-informed salesman, and to feel the pleasure of shopping in a store like Neiman Marcus.
We ate a quick dinner in a little bistro in the new mall, and then zoomed across the bridge to catch the ferry home. It was a fun way to spend the day with my son, and I am thankful that he wanted to spend it with me.