over christmas break, i had the pleasure of helping a friend shop for christmas gifts for a little guy who'd never had "santa" before. (you can read their story here, and you can look at the shopping, and how it turned out). it was nice, i had been in a rut, and needed some cheer to get myself out of it.
what's a better way out of a rut than retail therapy?
we picked up a lot of great toys in the toy store and then headed to a local department store to look for some clothes. confession. i don't shop for clothes here. the quality is usually really poor, and the prices can be extreme. i count on hand-me-downs from kind strangers and good friends, and christmas and birthday gifts to clothe myself and my children. when i travel to the states, i pick up what we need.
i am always shocked when i go to the store. and it's never the same thing. it's been boobies, and prosthetic male-privates, and in an upcoming post some risque barbie-type dolls.
shoplifting is difficult here. you have to check your bags at the entrance, and the sales clerks usually follow you like a lost-dog throughout the store. in the bigger stores, undercover security (with super-obvious ear buds) walk around, just waiting to catch someone in the act. books have tags in three places that need to be removed by the check-out girl (and no, that's not sexist - 95% of cashiers are female, mostly young enough to be called "girl"), clothes are tagged, even food, i'm sure, has a secret tag in it.