New City Nirvana

What do you look for if you are moving to a new city? A church? A favorite activity? I thought I was looking for a house but my head kept turning as I drove down the city's main street, the names of stores were catching my eye. It was like I had shoe-dar or something, I needed to know that the place had more to offer than my favorite supermarket and cultural activites. One place, Lee Lee's, caught my eye and I made a sharp turn out of traffic and headed into the parking lot. Of course it was a shoe store.

Moving is an adventure, but it is also sad. You can always visit friends, but what of the boutiques and neighborhood stores that I have come to know and love? The ones that send me holiday cards that say "Happy Kwaanza" when I am absolutely sure they had never heard of Kwaanza before knowing me or gifts of Casmere gloves with my initals in rhinestones for my birthday and specially scented candles?

I walked into this shoe boutique cautiously with my daughter in tow. Its always interesting to see how you will be received the first time you go into a place. The shoes were cute, most brands I had never hard of. A woman scurried out from the back, smiling at me, with not so much as a blink, just as my daughter began grabbing the sparkliest shoes she could find from the shelves. She is a shoe diva in the making, and the saleswoman smiled at her and told her she could try on anything she liked (even at 4), as long as she stayed ont he carpet. She then offered me her help and I could feel a relationship being formed. I tried on a few pairs and then she pointed out that they were having a sale! A fifty percent off sale at that. And they carried a shoes designed by a friend of mine based in Austin! In fact, several of the shoes were designed by local designers. I had found nirvana in my new city!

I finally picked out three pairs of cute, cute, shoes. I know I am one a shoe diet, but I didn't exactly fall of the wagon. My total bill was about $200 bucks, and if you think about it, in some of the brands I like, take Jimmy Choo, for example, that might not even get me one Choo! It was less than the cost of not even one whole shoe.

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