Monday, March 13, 2006
Though my blog’s title indicates a love for shoes it doesn’t mean that only footwear can get my heart racing and my palms sweating. No, no. Being the generous person I am I see nothing wrong in sharing the love. With books, bags and cashmere sweaters that I swear purr when stroked, (I guess I should add The Sherpa to the list – after all he does help finance some of my more extravagant obsessions, so) The Sherpa.
Many of these are recent paramours. Except the shoes. No, that love affair started when I was 10 and my father took me to buy a pair for my birthday. The finance minister of our home (my mother) had issued a budget of Rs. 250. After much lower lip quivering and around the little finger twisting I managed to procure myself a pair for Rs. 750. They were brown leather lace ups with ever so slightly pointy toes. How I loved them.
As usual I digress. This post isn’t about shoes but another first love of mine. As a child I would run around department stores, greedy hands reaching out and touching everything my chubby fingers could reach. Not toys or Barbie dolls - no, I was pursuing a far more superior path of consumerism. Stationery in all its glorious forms.
Pink Hello Kitty journals and Snoopy post-it notes. Donald Duck erasers and pencil boxes adorned with Pokemon’s ancestors. Pens that not only released ink but also a sickly sweet perfume. But my number 1 love was notebooks.
I adored the smell - clean and pure. The pages smooth and unsullied. The corners still sharp before time and being squashed in the back of my drawer bent them into submission. Some became diaries. Other repositories of ‘To do’ lists. Though for the life of me I can’t remember what I populated those lists with – Eat wheetabix for breakfast? Play with Flower Power Barbie (who was more garden fairy that mod chick). In others I wrote stories that were never finished and always featured a blonde girl called Jessica May. Some bore my first attempts at art. Stick figures dressed in triangular skirts, boxy jackets and - even at age 8 - insanely high heels.
I could never see a notebook through to the end though. After a few months I would lose interest. The pages were no longer new. The excitement would subside and be replaced by loathsome familiarity. And like a fickle teenager I would transfer my affections to a new flavour of the month without little thought for the feelings of my former beau. In a year I had amassed a small pile of half used diaries and pads. Tainted with my scribbles and of no use to any one else.
In later years this obsession proved troublesome. When I started working, the office supply cupboard proved too hard to resist. Rows of shiny notebooks, envelopes, glue sticks and jars of candy coloured paper clips that were waiting for me to dip my hand in and satisfy the greedy 8 year old that still lurked inside. The expensive roller ball pens, the pencils sharpened to perfection – even the clear plastic folders weren’t safe from me. A few months in to my first job and admin began insisting that all staff showed proof that they needed new stationery.
While many of my youthful fancies have come and gone (like the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles) my crush on notebooks has developed in to a far more mature affair. The mouthless Japanese cat has been replaced by understated black moleskine and the leaking, pens held together by cello tape have been discarded for writing instruments that don’t turn by skin Quink blue.
But every now and then the 8 year inside manifests. In perfumed erasers, ventricular rulers and pens that leave a shiny, wet trail of glittery pink words.
Ps. For those of you that didn't notice, this post was just an excuse for me to tell all of you that I have a moleskine notebook and link to the site. I may never write like Hemingway but at least I have the notebook. :P