Girls dream about their wedding day, how they’ll wear their hair, what dress they’ll wear…long before they even lay eyes on Mr. Right. I have dreamed about a similar celebratory day of sorts, an adoption day if you will, far in advance of knowing what my baby will look like. But before you send me baby names, let’s clarify that I am talking about a certain H bag I’d blogged about here already, when she was but a twinkle in my eye.
As with many real adoptions, you don’t get to pick the delivery date, the child, or much of anything else. The biological parent or agency calls the shots in most cases. When “it” appears, you have but maybe hours to show up and hope to fall in love with it.
In the fashion world, we all know Hermès sets its own schedule…the adoption happens when/if H wants, the orange purse gods willing. This wacky methodology puts yours truly, a control freak, in a slight pickle. But the less control I have over something, the more I overcompensate in preparing for the big event, whenever that may be. The more you tell me something may or may not happen, the more my mind will go into overdrive to well, plan for when it will happen.
So depending on when I might get that call from Paris, I at least have always known how I will wear my hair–blown out and glossy–and what I will wear for that big day: these light gray shoes (I kid you not that when I saw these shoes at the YSL boutique I had a premonition of skipping through the front doors of 24 rue du Faubourg in them)…
with a simple black Chanel dress if it’s a warm day or this lucky tweed jacket over cropped cigarette jeans if a Fall day…
completed with my Lucky Charms bag…
because every new mom could use a bit of luck!
I had it all planned out. My witness to the adoption would most likely be a female partner in crime, a bff or my lil sis if we could get a babysitter for her kids, or even my mom if we could get a babysitter for her husband (!). What is the point of going to a bag adoption without someone who would giggle and swoon silently with you all the while faking a faÃ§ade of coolness?
But what is it that they say about the best laid plans? Something about going out the window? Well, today’s entry is about how one girl’s impatient chase for the almost mythical H bag abruptly ended in a matter of minutes. Let’s rewind to a recent Tuesday afternoon when I stopped by an H boutique, almost as an afterthought, just to see if they might have a certain belt I was hoping to find for a black dress that needed more definition. The sales assistant tried but could not find one that would fit me. Our conversation then segued into my recent, unsuccessful quest in Paris for a bag and of course my wish list. Maybe she took pity on me, maybe she liked my jokes. Or maybe the stars just somehow aligned right then and there, but she looked squarely at me and said there might be a shipment the next day. If something interesting showed up, would I like for her to call me? Sure, I told her. I’ve heard that one before…
The next day I scheduled an appointment with the Chanel boutique to pick up an ensemble from the 13C collection. They’d been nice enough to put it on a courtesy hold so I could sleep on that decision. It was 3pm when I began walking back to my hotel from the mall, thinking I could freshen up a bit before heading back out to Chanel. Wouldn’t you know it, I got the call from H. She was excited, her voice a bit shaky. She asked if I was still at the mall. I told her no; I’d just left. Then she said they had gotten some bags. I asked her to be more specific. It was, after all, a good 30 minutes brisk walk in very humid weather (which made it feel more like an hour-long mud run).
Birkin. 35. Etain. That was all I picked up from her next sentences. I told her I needed 40 minutes to turn around. I honestly cannot tell you what happened in these minutes. I must have blacked out. But I do have texts and emails to my sis and besties on my phone to tell me that I was indeed conscious enough to show up at the boutique.
They greeted me by name when I walked through the door; I had made it to the right place! One gal offered me a drink while the other asked me to sit and wait here:
My hands were trembling, but not so much that I couldn’t document this whole experience. I knew I would need photographic evidence as I was on my own for this adoption. So I took some photos of the handover location:
And then the woman was back, carrying a huge orange box still encased in plastic. Please follow me, she said, nodding toward a room. As soon as we stepped inside, she locked the door. There would be no photography here, clearly. She whipped out a short blade. I instinctively took two steps back. Is this what a drug deal feels like?
In deft strokes she removed the shrink wrap then retracted her blade. Before I knew it, the lid was off and there it was, the no-longer-elusive Birkin bag in its herringbone dust bag. As if a time bomb was ticking somewhere, she pulled the tote out, removed its felt coverings, contents and stuffing, and handed it to me, all in under 3 seconds. This obviously was not her first rodeo. I felt dizzy.
She pointed me to the mirror and I think I even managed to carry a lengthy conversation with her (about what I have no clue anymore) during the inspection. Then she packed everything back up inside the box. A few minutes later, I paid for the bag and was walked through the door. The entire transaction took less than 15 minutes; it would now take me longer to catch a ride back to the hotel.
Time of adoption? 12/5/12 at 4:04pm.
What was I wearing? A navy JCrew sundress I bought on sale for $40 and $10 flip flops.
How did I wear my hair? Matted to my head from the humidity, or perspiration. Either way, gross.
And that was exactly how my road to adoption, part 2, happened. There is no rhyme or reason to how an Hermès bag shows up in one’s life.
This Birkin is exactly the same color of the Special Order I had put in for the Kelly 32 in Paris, albeit a different leather–this bag is Clemence while the Kelly will be chÃ¨vre.
God only knows if that bag will ever materialize, but let’s hope part 3 of my quest will be a better planned affair. My head is still spinning from this first, unexpected arrival. But at least I know I did get the right shoes for adopting an etain bag!