I suggested that we go to Crate and Barrel. I had been missing trips to the Crate and Barrel outlet, where my mom and I used to go when they lived in northern Virginia. That store, both the outlet and the regular version, is so lovely. I want a life that looks like Crate and Barrel, but I know it's an illusion that they're selling. I love those Le Creuset pans, but I hardly find time to cook hunks of meat in my grandmother's roasting pan, so why do I think it would be different with yet another pan?
We wandered around the furniture, which looks so cool--both trendy and classic. We sat on some of the chairs, but they're not comfortable. Whew--just saved $800!
My reading for this week-end: Ruth Reichl's My Kitchen Year, about how she coped after Gourmet magazine abruptly shut down. It has recipes and lovely photos too.
Yes, I am sensing a theme. Part of me longs for a major change, but I'm not sure what I want that major change to be. It's so different from when I was younger, when I knew exactly what I'd like my life to look like, if only I had a magic wand. So, while I'm waiting for those kinds of issues to clarify for me, I'll think about smaller changes: some better quality wine glasses, some delicious cooking, some trips to stores where I'm not willing to afford the stuff which hopes to tempt me to think that all I need is a better sofa and my life would change.
Though those tablescapes that they had set up in Crate and Barrel were mighty tempting--lovely displays along long dining room tables to evoke autumn, Thanksgiving, and Christmas--just lovely.
While I was there, I was reminded of "Crocks," a poem I wrote that's inspired by the store, a poem which explores similar themes. It's just been published in Innisfree Poetry Journal, and you can read it here.
And now it's time to get ready for church, a truly countercultural activity these days--not just in the fact that so few people go to church, but more so in the message that I get there. Church reminds me that what Crate and Barrel offers me is an illusion of the good life. The good life will be found in other ways, not in the buying of stuff.