Saturday, September 3, 2011

Scarf lady

I have a tendency to fall in love easily. With places, that is, not people. I still remember my first affair--I was 14 and I left the US for the first time after my parents agreed to let me do a mini-study abroad trip to Mexico.  I remember stepping outside of our hotel the day we arrived in Mexico City and falling hard (figuratively, not literally). 

Eventually the strong feelings I had developed for Mexico City were replaced when after college some girlfriends and I decided to tour Europe by train carrying only 1 backpack apiece.  Those of you who know me will know how out of character it is for me to travel sans makeup or hair products.  Thought I had great flirtations on this trip with Paris, Munich, Bamberg, Prague, Venice, Milan, Florence, Rome, Madrid, Sevilla, Gibraltar, Granada and Toledo among others, it was Barcelona who truly captured my heart.  The coast, the restaurants, and the Gaudi structures--I was smitten for many years.

I was fortunate to find a job that fuels my love of travel, and I have found that when I fall hard for a new city, it is hard to resist bringing a piece of it home with me.  And that piece is usually in the form of artwork.  A few years back, and I had a business trip that left me stuck in Hong Kong for almost a month, and I promptly fell in love again, this time with the most amazing place I had ever seen.  It helped that I had plenty of time to explore with three full weekends and a very solicitous tour guide at my disposal, and I came home with some true treasures including a set of monochromatic paintings I adore.

At that point, I decided my walls were full, so when I fell in love with Berlin a couple of years later, I opted for a traditional Christmas pyrimid over a modern abstract painting.  Since that time when I feel I absolutely must bring back a momento of my latest infatuation, I try to find something a little non-traditional, and of course my A-#1 rule is that I absolutely must be in love with whatever I buy.

A few months ago, I was briefly reunited with my first love.  On my way to Venezuela, I had a short meeting in Mexico City, and as we drove through the streets, I reminisced about the last time I had been there.  Though time was short, I did have a few hours to shop in the international terminal of the airport.  And sure enough, I found the perfect recuerdo--a beautiful brightly-colored, hand-painted silk scarf from the design house Pinela-Covalin.The color and pattern reminded me at once of all that I loved the first time I "met" Mexico.

Last month, I found another pair of to-die-for scarves in Colombia.  This time by designer Ana-Cristina Bojanini.  Now the thing is, I am not a woman who wears many scarves.  And the ones I do wear are of the keep-you-warm-in-winter-knitted variety, not the cleverly-knotted-at-your-neck-as-an-accessory type.  Maybe I am looking for a change, and maybe I secretly hope to become the type of woman who does wear scarves.  Maybe wearable art is my latest trend.  Either way, look for my scarf collection to grow along with my art collection.

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