When I was little, my family went on trips to Gatlinburg. One of my favorite shops was owned by a man from South America, and everything in his store was from his home country*.
I loved all the different textures and colors in his shop. Hand-painted beads, little knit animal finger puppets, thick colorful sweaters.
I'd buy small things with the money my parents gave me, but one glorious trip, they bought my sisters and me each a sweater. I chose the deep blue one with colorful mountains, 3D people sewn on, climbing up to the top, toward the bright yellow sun in the sky.
Whenever I'd wear it, I'd feel all the different textures. I thought it was beautiful, and I wore it with pride. I, too, had been known to climb mountains, and this was my way to show the world. I even immortalized it that year in my school picture**.
Thinking back to the happiness of this time, I am 99.7% sure it was absolutely not a cool sweater at all.
While my friends wore sweet t-shirts to convey what they deemed worthy of their adoration, I chose a garment that looked like my grandmother had bought it for me, or maybe worse, made for me. But the beautiful part? I didn't know it wasn't cool, I just liked it, and I rocked that mofo out with a big ole bow on top of my head. A BIG BIG bow...
I conjure up this memory and wonder, is that ignorantly blissful girl still in there, or have I done her in? Can she help the minimalist/ lazy/ practical/ (hiding) clothing wearer I have become? What wonderful marriage would happen if she hung out with the woman I am today?
I know for a fact, they'd do some damage on some KRAFT mac & cheese. That's. For. Sure.
*I want to say Peru...
**Photo to come. Still looking for it.