คอื s h o p p i n g...
The weird thing is, I actually like shops and I like market stalls. I love looking at the things in/on them, and talking to the people selling them.
Give me a free morning in Bangkok and I'll happily wander around staring at the second hand stuff on sale under Pinklao bridge, or the curries, deserts and breakfasts getting sold along the roadside.
Give me a day and I could easily spend it getting lost in the maze of streets that run between the Old Siam and the riverside, 'little India'I think we farangs call it, and 'Chinatown' or, if its early Saturday morning around JJ, and Saphan Kwai.
But... as soon as I have something that I actually need to buy, shopping stops being fun. It turns into a nightmare.
Of the things I hate shopping for, top of the list is clothes. I like my body, but its a wierd shape. Broad shoulders, long arms, and thighs that are way bigger than my waist and hip sizes say they should be. So, shopping for clothes, and finding things that I like, that also fit me has always been a bit of a pain. But in Bangkok, where most things are made for petite, thin women with barely an in of flab in sight, clothes shopping verges on a soul (and self esteem) destroying experience. Nothing fits.
At times you wish there was a 3XL size, as you struggle to do up the buttons or pull up the zip on the 2XL and wonder why, despite not gaining any weight over the last couple of months, you have suddenly seem to have become so huge. Just reading the the sizes themself - 2XL is around a size 16 (the size of an average English girl) is depressing, and makes you feel frumpy and fat.
And the two worst things to have to try and buy from somewhere in Bangkok... bras and trousers.
I've always hated buying trousers. My legs are too long and my hips and my arse far too big to fit into normal sized women's trousers. Baggy trousers are OK (though when I wear them they never look that baggy), leggings are too (since they are supposed to be clingy and thigh hugging.) But, smart, formal work trousers... Finding a pair that fit is mission impossible. About a year ago (the last time I needed to buy some smart-ish new trousers for work) I worked out that buying mens trousers (size 36 with a 32inch leg) and asking someone to take up the bottoms was a much, much easier, and less demoralising experience.
The problem now is, that, somehow or other I've lost a bit of weight over the last couple of months. If I look in the mirror I actually have a waist and hips - rather than a big lump of flab joining the two. In theory this should make trouser shopping easier. But it doesn't. If anything,it's made it ten times worse. I still can't get into any womans ones and now, guys trousers fit round the hips but theres a big ugly lump of loose material hanging around the part that's supposed to be my waist.
I spent 2 days, and around 10 hours looking for a couple of pairs of trousers for school. I brought 3 pairs of shorts (good for riding my bike), a couple of T-shirts, and 3 cheap DVD's. I even took a quick 2 hour skive and went to see a movie, but, trouser-wise found absolutely nothing.
I'm not ashamed to say that I'm a big girl. I have tits. I like them the way they are too. Not too big, and certainly not too small. Unfortunately makers of bras on sale in Thailand don't seem to think the same way as I do. Even C and D cups come with huge ammounts of padding. Trying to find a padding-less bra on sale in a normal shop (so that you don't have to pay almost 1000 baht for it like in M & S) also verges on being mission impossible. Even sports bras come with pads stuck inside.
So, why the urgency ? Why, when I hate it so much, did I make it my mission to spent 2 of the 4 days I had in Bangkok shopping. I'm going to be living in a small province in the north of the country from next week. If I can't find these things on sale in Bangkok, Thailand's shopping capital, I have no chance up there.
The town has a couple of department stores (2 that both happen to have the same name and have the same limited selection of tuff...) and a small (but compared to most of the shops in the town huge) Tesco Lotus. That's it, as far as places that sell western sized clothing go.
After wasting 2 days looking for some trousers and a few new bras I gave up. Taking my friend's cousin to see a movie seemed a better way to spend what was left of my time.
I'm up north now. Earlier today I got a phone call from one of the teachers in the English department. She's in Bangkok on business and wanted to give me some news about the start of term.
'You can wear a skirt?' She asks me.
'No' I tell her. I hate wearing skirts. I have none that fit me, I have no ladderless pairs of tights left in my sock bag, and, after 3 months of travelling around in (mainly long) trousers, my ghost-white legs now stand out a mile, contrasting sharply with my freckled cheeks and tanned arms.
NO WAY am I going to embarrass myself on my first day at work, by wearing a skirt. Whenever I wear shorts, I hear enough people staring at my legs and saying 'pew khao jang' (her skin is REALLY white.) I don't really want to give my M2 and M3 classes the chance to comment on the state of my legs too. But, since I have no new trews I guess I have no choice.
The teacher continues. There was a big meeting at school today and the director said that the female teachers must wear skirts. "But I don't have any that fit me anymore", I tell her, "and I don't have any tights." "Don't worry," she tells me. "I'm back in home tomorrow. We can go shopping if you like. Maybe you can find a traditional skirt. They are very long. I think they will be OK"
So,something to look forward to later today... More s h o p p i n g.
|Create Date : 05 พฤษภาคม 2551
|Last Update : 5 พฤษภาคม 2551 10:35:28 น.
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