I’m going to be heading to Africa in a few weeks. I’ll be going on safari in Kenya. I’m thrilled and excited and a little nervous. There is one tiny problem, I don’t own any safari appropriate clothing. I’m pretty much a skinny jeans persons until it gets hot and then I wear skirts or dresses. Neither of those do I want to be wearing as I climb into the high off the ground safari jeeps or lounge beneath mosquito nets.
I went to my usual places, Ross, Target, Nordstrom’s Rack, Old Navy, Burlington Coat Factory – and found nothing. I then I poked my head into stores where I’d never been before, Hot Topix, Pac Sun and a few more places whose names I can’t remember and found even less. I’m a bargain shopper. I don’t go to JCrew, Anthropologie (can’t even spell the name of the place) or any of the other high end stores. I manage to look office appropriate but not stogie without spending half my paycheck. I like shopping, I just don’t like spending money.
Unfortunately I was stuck. I needed clothes. Specific clothes. Clothes which, I came to realize, I wasn’t going to find except at a sporting goods or out doorsy store. I found one pair of safari type loose, nylon pants at Sports Chalet – they were even on sale! But one pair of pants is not going to get me through six days of driving around a dusty savannah. So I went to a high end specialty store.
I was shocked at the prices. Clearly, I’ve spent far too long shopping at Target. I searched all the clearance racks without luck. I finally manned up and took into the dressing room two pairs of pants with $64.00 price tags and one pair that cost $98.00! I rarely pay more than $30.00 for anything and often much, much less. I stepped into the first pair of pants. The sizing was perfect. The length was perfect. I even liked how I looked in them which meant I wouldn’t have to flee anytime someone pointed a camera at me. I tried on pair number two then pair number three. They were all exactly what I needed. I was looking at a total of over $250.00.
I redressed and took the three pairs back out to the sales floor. I decided to read cover to cover the tags on the pants which contained lengthy explanations about the functionality of the pants and the process that went into making them. That’s when I realized it. These weren’t merely pants, these were an eco-system! I would be wearing a climate controlled, sun-resistant, insect repellent habitat. I wasn’t buying clothing, I was buying an environment. So that’s how I came to be the proud owner of pants which will allow me to survive anything. I’m ready for the wild. Bring it on!