Friday, March 4, 2016

Scent of a Woman

I honestly wonder sometimes if other people get themselves into the same situations as I do.  It would seem to be part of the whole human condition.  So one of two things is happening either the same things happen to other people and they just don't feel the need to share it with everyone (a legitimate possibility) or I am just predisposed to off the wall situations.

It was Thursday night and I had finished up all the work I needed to, so I was able to head out at a reasonable hour. However, I didn't time it that well and I had a long while until my bus was scheduled to show up.  So I decided to shop around the Bay Downtown.  I have such fond memories of the Bay Downtown.  Whenever my Mum or Grandma Preston used to take me there, it was always a big deal.  I especially remember going there to visit Santa and see their amazing Christmas decoration section during the holidays.  The dedicated almost an entire side of an upper floor to it.

Good grief, to explain all this I really have to dig into the archives.  WAY back when I was younger, I used to go with my Mum and Grandma Letendre to England to visit our family quite a bit.  While there we would visit our family and watch the BBC in the evenings.  I got hooked on Eastenders, Coronation Street and Are You Being Served.  Are you being served was a show about a group of sales people working on the womans/menswear floor of an upscale department store.  The characters were awesome, a feisty older lady whose hair was always bright colours (purple, green, pink... you name it), a flamboyantly gay gentleman who always told his customers that the long sleeves would "ride up with wear".  I fell in love with it.

Which bring be back to the Bay.  It reminds me of the store in the show.  It seems more special than the ones you would find at the mall.  It smells different.  I know that sounds odd, but it does.  It smells of history; that oddly stale/stuffy smell, not unlike an old library book. It has old fashioned fixtures, floors that look like they haven't been renovated since the store opened, that kind of thing.  

It was always a given that whenever we went to the Bay, we would go for lunch at the Paddlewheel restaurant upstairs.  First off, getting to the restaurant was exciting.  The restaurant was on the top floor of the store, which means you had to take umpteen different escalators to get there. While escaltors in and of themselves are not very exciting, these ones were because the higher up you went, the narrower the escaltors became until only a single person could go up at a time.  As a kid, that was pretty freaking cool.

Once you arrived, it was almost like you were at a theme park.  The entrance to the restaurant was decorated to look like old storefronts.  Once inside, it was made to feel as if you were on a ship with decor to match.  There was an even an actual paddlewheel fountain.  Let me tell you, for me as a kid.  That felt really special.  Even thinking about it now brings back really fond memories of outings(she used to call them that) with my grandma.  I really miss her.

Anyways, so that's why I love the Bay.  It's been kind of depressing to see its demise over the last number of years.  Floors are closed and blocked off,  the grocery store/discount place in the basement has closed.  They briefly attempted to turn it into a Target, but that fell flat when Target pulled out of Canada.  Basically the store is a shell of its former self.

Notwithstanding, I still like going and browsing around.  Seeing as I had some time to kill, I began to wander.  I stopped off at the perfume counter.  I am not one for perfume outside of a spritz of Bath and Body Works Malibu something or other.  It seems you can't wear it to work, the theatre or a lot of different places due to "scent free venues", so it just fell out of fashion with me.

I do like it when men wear cologne though.  It just smells like a man. Not a boy, not a guy, a man.  A grown up man who has his sh*t together wearing either an exquisitely tailored suit or a simple white tee and a pair of great well worn jeans.  Swoon.

I picked up a bottle of Ralph Lauren polo blue.  I took at quick whiff from the bottle (instead of spraying it into the air or on one of those pieces of white cardboard they provide).  The outside of the bottle was inexplicably greasy (ew) for some reason.  As I went to put it back onto the counter, it fell out of my hands and shattered.  SHATTERED.

The woman behind the counter  was really nice about it, but still, the damage was done.  She said it was a complete accident and I didn't have to pay for it.  Thank goodness for that.

The trouble was now, I was the living embodiment of Polo Blue. It was on my mitts, my jacket, my boots.  Even if you like the scent, anything in that quantity is a bad thing.  In addition, as I mentioned before, it smelled like a man.  Scent of a woman it was not

I had to take the bus home stinking to high heaven.  If anyone else has a bus blog, I am sure that I made the cut.    Thankfully once home I was able to wash everything and I got the cologne out.

 Oh well, things like this happen to everyone.....


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