F Part Two: Inside the Shop ~ Critique of the Unique

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Friday, June 4, 2010

Part Two: Inside the Shop

 Vintage Transportation

Walking into this shop, or any shop for that matter, begins with a forewarning to the children:
"under no circumstance are you allowed to touch any item.  That means no "just looking" with your hands, no "just seeing what happens if I breathe on it", no "she made me" or "he made me" do-its, and especially, no "mom, mom....MOM, what is this?" moments where you actually pick up the item just to show me what you are talking about!"
I know it is wasted words as the lure of shiny objects and fragile memories of years gone by reach out to them, enticing them to touch "just a little" and I can't say as if I blame them. I find my own hands wanting to feel the past, to bend around something that has more history and a story to tell than myself. We manage, with me leading them, as Mother Hens do, to make our way through the tangled pathways of well balanced displays.

This particular shop is a mix of old furnishings, some with elaborate details and carvings, mixed in with newer items and reproductions. We are window shopping, with nothing particular in mind and without intention to purchase, so I am hoping  the whole while that the "you break, you buy" policy will not be enforced before our visit ends. We round the first corner, and I spy several items that pique my curiosity, but nothing that stops me in my tracks. I fear this may be what I term a "dud" store, where everything is interesting to look at, but where nothing begs for attention.

That is until we mazed our way to this! I had never seen anything like it in my life but the tag attached to it called it a "Chinese Cart" and I took its word for it. How it ended up in a little ole' southern town is beyond my guess, but I would love to learn the story behind it. If I am not mistaken, I believe these were horse drawn carts used for everyday purposes and not the same as the Rickshaws that were human-powered. The children wanted to climb aboard, of course, but I ushered them away quickly so that the urge did not overpower them. Little did I know what awaited around the next bend.

Yes indeed, something else they wanted so badly to scamper into and it took all I had to keep an eye on them while squeezing around the brick-a-brac to get far enough away to capture the entirety of this beautiful carriage (it didn't help that all I had handy was my iPhone for picture purposes). This photo certainly does not do this carriage justice, as the wood work was simply beautiful and although I am uncertain if it is all original, it gives an excellent example of the luxury transportation centuries past had the privilege of reclining in, while their horses pulled them to and fro--although I wouldn't want to be riding in it when one of those wheels decided to give way. Which makes me wonder, did they have a spare tire hidden away somewhere?

It was a great lesson for the children as they had never seen such items before and they couldn't wait to get home to express their excitement to their dad, who was unable to accompany us on our little adventure.  So, even after all that bribing to get them to go, they actually had fun--imagine that!!



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