|Mill River, George Ruhe for The New York Times|
As soon as the academic year ends, the students flee for their far-flung homes and the tourists take their places on the streets and in the shops. The reputation of being a gorgeous town means that tourists flock to it. The location of 2 hours from Boston, and 3 from New York City, make it an ideal weekend get away for city folk... city folk who don't know how to drive, or walk on the sidewalks in an efficient manner. Don't get me wrong, I appreciate both the students (having been one) and the tourists because they are probably the only reason the town stays afloat. The really are the only ones who shop in the expensive boutiques that make up 90% of the town's storefronts. Without the steady flow of tourism and full wallets the stores wouldn't be able to sell their fine art, and overpriced clothes. The locals surely don't buy it...unless desperate... except for one weekend in July.
|Sidewalk Sales, Photo by Bill McBride, http://www.flickr.com/photos/wmcbride1965/4842301382/|
Near the end of July my town has a sidewalk sale weekend- the only time where retail items are marked as a decent price. Having been through several of these sidewalk sales since I made the move, I knew the key was to get there early- what is put out the first day is what there is to sell.
So being the good shopaholic I am, I promptly took my lunch break early and ran to the higher end boutique in town. I scooped up 10 dresses and took them into the fitting room. One of the dresses I managed to scoop up was the Trina Turk St. Tropez dress in the watermelon color.
I loved it. Everything about it. The silhouette, the fabric, the color. One problem. The dress was a size 8. I am a size 4. It hurt me to put it back on the rack. But that is a size gap just too big to fix. I did end up with two winning dresses- so the sale wasn't a total flop, but a slight heartbreak nonetheless.
So imagine my surprise that I found the dress online, at Nordstrom's Rack for even cheaper? I was in heaven, but I realized that it was going to be really hard to transition the piece into our classic New England Falls and our awful winters. I also had just bought two other dresses, so it was a little overkill.
I just checked online again, and Nordstrom's Rack still has the dress, just no longer in my size. Major bummer, but I still love the dress.
The other week my little paradise city held it's annual sidewalk sale weekend. Our normally busy town, which then gets crowded with tourists come the weekend, was insanely busy.