When I realized I was moving back to the States for a while I knew in my heart that if I did not get a fur coat, I would not survive. Not just the cold of winter, but everything. I tweeted about it and people thought I was trying to be cute, or funny. Not so. I knew, in the depths of my inner most being, that if I was to keep body and soul in tact during this season in the States, it would only come through wearing a fur coat.
So today I went out in search for one. Thank goodness my mom was willing to drive me around because my driver’s license expired and I haven’t gotten it renewed yet. Our first stop was Goodwill, where the fur coats were scarce and overpriced on find. No luck. We headed across town to a fine little establishment on 10th street. I knew, right when I walked in, that this was like no other thrift store I had ever been in in my entire life, and I felt in the air that potential was there for all my wildest dreams to come true.
The sweet old lady behind the register asked, “Are you looking for anything particular?”
I was thrilled she asked, “Why yes, yes I am.”
“Well, how can I help you?”
“I would like a fur coat.”
She looked me up and down, “Is it for you?” I expected a little bit of sarcasm, or resistance at my response.
She was not phased in the least, only slightly worried they might be out of stock. She looked apprehensively towards the back, “Well, I think we might have one left way back yonder on that furthest rack back there.”
I was ecstatic, but also nervous that it was either gone, not my size, or any other danger one might come across when buying a fur coat. Eli and I headed to the back, past the sweater section, and beyond the old sweat pants. It truly was in the farthest of far, right there in the back next to the hand written sign that said, “We cannot be held responsible for any accidents that may happen in this store.”
Eli pointed the sign out with a scared look on his face, “That’s creepy.”
I agreed. We both stared at the sign, for what could have been seconds or eternity. Probably seconds. I then turned my attention over to the back rack. And there it was, a beautiful dark brown synthetic fur coat. Eli became more excited than me. I quickly took it off the rack and tried it on. It fit perfectly, apart from the arms being short when I move in certain ways. I don’t always have to move in every way.
I looked at Eli, “What do you think?”
Eli, “It’s awesome!”
“Uh huh!!” He could not hold back and began rubbing me down like a dog owner would show love to their beloved pet.
“I agree. This is me.”
Eli, “Yes it is.”
Eli, “It’s perfect.”
Me, “Yes it is. You are experiencing destiny right here Eli. How does it feel?”
He kept rubbing, “It feels great!” I think he thought I was talking about the coat.
I checked the price tag and it was a reasonably priced $15. “Fifteen dollars is a good deal right?”
Eli, “That’s a great deal!”
“I thought so.” I looked in the mirror and took it all in. “So I should get it?”
“Yeah!” Eli said, with fiery coveting eyes, swirling with excitement.
I patted him on the arm, “Don’t worry. I will hand this down to you one day.”
He looked relieved.
I went up to the counter and paid. The lady said it doesn’t even need a wash, and that I could even “hang it out in the sun to get rid of germs”. That was exciting news. So exciting I just decided to wear the coat out. I don’t know if that lady knows what a hero she is. She may never know the impact she had on my life. But I now have a reason to go on, and I know I will be strong enough to brave both this metaphorical and literal winter season of life. I own a fur coat. I own this town. Boom!