Last weekend Alex was sick with what he calls “The Gwyneth Paltrow Diet” aka the trots. When he finally felt a bit better we decided to get out of the house for some low key fun, not realizing we were about to enter– and win– the Bougie Olympics.
We went to Stanley Marketplace aka a gentrified aircraft factory that now houses restaurants and shops that cater to people with very very very specific tastes. Like only serving biscuit based entrees or threadbare t-shirts on clearance for $90. To be fair, I was totally into it. Sometimes you just need to drink beer out of a mason jar while two nineteen year old girls in the next booth discuss their meditation practice.
After our biscuit dinner we perused the shops. Confession: I like buying woo woo stuff just as much as I like making fun of it (which is A LOT) so when Alex held up a little glass jar full of playground wood chips and said “this costs $39” I was like “let me take a closer look.”
Apparently these wood chips were slivers of holy wood that bring good fortune when burned– if you’ve read any of my travel stories then you know I’ll buy almost anything that combines fire and good fortune. But $39 seemed a bit steep and honestly I’m not sure I need an entire jar of good fortune because life’s traumas and misfortunes are how stories are born and I wouldn’t want to jeopardize that.
But guess what.
The next shop was an olden days mercantile with rough hewn shelves and tin buckets full of sage and holy woo woo wood chips. You could even purchase a set of rustic and ineffective looking scissors with a 100% chance of giving you tetanus, but I was really in the market for something to catch on fire. I considered buying sage, but since I’ve spending less time on Facebook I didn’t feel like I had any evil spirits to purge from my life. So I zeroed in on the bin of holy woodchips which– at $1.25 each– were a steal of a deal.
Here’s reason # 10,732 why Alex is the best:
“Babe, I want to buy this wood chip.”
There were two girls in front of us who were consulting with the cashier/voodoo priest on which essential oils would help them grow extra limbs and/or get boyfriends, so we ended up waiting in line for 9 minutes. I quickly did the maths (which I’m really good at) and realized that 9 minutes at my day job would earn enough almost enough money to buy 5 sticks of holy wood. Which is a great deal because we all know I don’t do anything at work.
The women in front of me had just spent $640 on tattered burlap menstrual cloths dipped in frankincense but I was like “I would like to buy this stick please” and the man with the elaborate beard and suspenders didn’t judge me at all, he just said “yes ma’am” which better be a hipster thing and not a “fine lines and droopy eyelids” thing.
I went home and Alex proceeded to catch the stick on fire while I danced around to this Lady Gaga song (judge your mother) and waited for my good fortune to arrive. The entire house filled with the scent of plastic and mint as an aura of holiness settled about us. Yes, Zola was dragging her arse in circles around the living room and Alex was hiding his devastation at my failing to refill the Brita pitcher but it was still a very meaningful moment. I cast my intentions into the rest of the year– which I will continue calling “The New Year” until at least mid-May– and channeled all the available good fortune I could muster.
Ah, 2018. I bet you’re going to knife us at a bazaar in Calcutta then carry us to the hospital on your back.
I can’t wait.
Do you indulge in anything woo woo? Any big hopes for 2018?
What should we set on fire next?