Thursday, June 28, 2007

New Job Rules

Well, I started a new job yesterday and so far it seems swell (hello casual Fridays, how I have missed you). Nonetheless, here are some aspects of working in this town that have me a wee bit off-kilter:
  • Driving to get lunch
  • Driving to and from work
  • The heat! The car, he doesn't do so well in the heat. It's a Subaru Outback, which as we all know is made for the Vermont climate.
Ok, there's one good thing about driving to and from work -- shoes! I can occasionally wear heels to work and it's not the end of my feet. Sweet!

I've been doing an informal poll of people I meet who are transplants. "How long did it take you to adjust to South Carolina?" Thus far I've heard one year from three different people.

Monday, June 18, 2007

Oops I Did It Again

Today I investigated Five Points for an hour by foot. Armed with a sweet tea from The Gourmet Shop I strolled around and was able to hit a few places. Here's the Five Points website which I am happy to report has been redone since I last checked it about a month ago.

Oops! is a store that sells catalog clothing at a discount. A couple of years ago I got a great Citizens of Humanity jean jacket there which is still very much in the rotation. Today I got a couple of the long sleeved slim fit tees from JCrew for $9.99 each which are magical, as well as a Gap tank for $7.99. I know many of you New Yorkers were wondering how I'd get my fix, well this place is the answer!

There are also a couple of used/vintage clothing shops in the area which are neat, though nothing today worked out for me -- Revente and Sid and Nancy.

Finally, the used bookstore Dr. Books is totally charming. I got a book of short stories, Best of the South, (hello, gotta get into it!) as well as The Life of Pi which I have been meaning to read.

Oh, I had also wanted to check out the used outdoor gear store for a possible gift for my husband, but it's closed on Monday's so I'll probably pop over there tomorrow. That statement is a test to see if he ever reads this!

And speaking of ever reading this, I've noticed that my weekly visits have gone down since I moved to Columbia. Folks, I'm still here. Even though the lifestyle has and will likely continue to change, I'm still the same old Caroline so keep reading and I will keep blogging. Promise.

Monday, June 11, 2007

Short Shorts and Furniture Shopping

Short shorts - that's what's popular here in the SC. At first I was horrified; only a few skinny minis can pull this look off, yet everyone from age 10 to age 35 is wearing shorty shorts here. Well, since I've officially been through my week-long 90+ degree weather I am a little more forgiving of the trend. Hello - it's hot!

So the new obsession is furniture shopping. Accent tables, wall sconces - this is now my vocab, people. I've been to just about every furniture store in town at least once trying to absorb the difference in look, price, etc. Most stores here are what is called "traditional" when what I prefer is called "contemporary;" still, I trudge on, carrying my notebook in hand and scribbling notes about length, width, height and price. So far, our (yes, our - my husband is full on into this furniture shopping too. If you have a mate totally disinterested in the decor of your interior, consider yourself lucky) favorite store is Strobler because you can totally customize a couch - legs, upholstery, accent pillows - for the same price as buying it off the floor. Wednesday is 20% off everything in the store so I am impatiently counting the days until I can go back. Whit Ash has some seriously aggressive sales people, but I still kind of like a bookshelf and a coffee table/end table set over there too.

It all kind of gives me agita after a while as there are really endless possible combinations of end tables, rugs, lamps and chairs. Still, I am enjoying strolling into a furniture shop during the business day, meeting a friend for lunch and then blogging about it all in the late afternoon. Very lady of leisure of me, n'est ce pas? Don't worry, it won't last too long.

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

First Report From Down South

Friends! I am here in South Carolina and I promise I haven't forgotten about you. It's been tough getting internet access as we are not yet connected in the apartment. In order to report back from the fields I must seek out free wi-fi, which I have done here at Panera Bread.

On the shopping front: after I am done here at PB I will be making my third trip to Target in four days. Thank goodness for this megastore! Hangers, Runners, Clorox, the Patrick Robinson shirts that weren't available in NYC in my size -- I've gotten it all. I had been worried that with Target as the only extremely convenient and inexpensive store in the area, every woman would be sporting Target gear. Well, sure enough the worry was confirmed on day two of being here. At the first place my husband and I went for breakfast - The Gourmet Shop - the woman behind the register commented on my Tshirt (from Target) and mentioned she had the same one. Oh sigh, looks like I'm going to have to pull the "only available in NY" pieces out of their boxes to maintain a unique look. Should I say boxes? Nay, I've unpacked most everything and put it into my...(drumroll please)....walk-in closet! That's right, that's just one of the perks of our new apartment.

Besides Target I have been adjusting to the pace (much slower), the climate (much hotter - 90 today) and the culture (I was talking on my cellphone earlier and everyone was looking at me; realized I was shouting).

People are nice - service people and younger folks call me "Ma'am," the atmo is laid back and the "suburbs" are filled with huge old Magnolia and other beautiful trees. There are tons of squirrels, so Monkey has a field day every time we go for a walk.

I'll check in with y'all later, for now I'm going to finish my sweet tea.