Antique stores must hate people like me. I wander through them with no intent of purchasing anything, no money to spare really, and entertain myself with laughing at the bizarre belongings of long dead people. No dealer cares if I used to own ten troll dolls, if I won’t purchase their one (a sadly bedraggled purple-haired fellow); no one wants to hear my opinions about decorating with dead animals, when their shop is full of moth-eaten deer heads and a stuffed weasel. Conor and Ivy wanted me to come along while they looked at jewelry and strange bits of military stuff (I am still unclear about what exactly they are in the market for), but I didn’t want to follow them around the warren of shops.
So I wandered alone among the gaudy plates and faded photos, I fingered the fox stoles and peered into the glass cabinets at tiny tin soldiers and plastic reindeer. I found some lovely etched wine glasses from the 1930s and an oak box with seven drawers. What is it that makes cabinets with multiple drawers so enticing? Why do I covet the furnishings ripped from old pharmacies and dry goods stores, where slots and cubbies meant for hardware or medicines or embroidery needles promise places to put everything? And must all the clothes be so very small? I found a lovely pair of gloves but could not waggle a single finger into their delicate shape. In a booth full of Asian “antiques” (all looking far more likely to be products of modern factories), I found some pretty teapots, but none covered with hundreds of cranes like the one that my sister gave to me, the one that needs a new lid. I didn’t find another miniature Santa and sleigh, nor anything remotely close to it. Conor pointed out that my Kmart-purchased flour and sugar canisters were offered as antiques, and I have to admit, I did buy them about 40 years ago, so perhaps they are.
We wandered until the announcement was made that the stores were closing in ten minutes. No purchases by us. The dealers were probably glad to see our backs.