I haven’t been inside a thrift store to look at bags for quite some time. As a result, I was so delighted to see these two unexpected items. It was an unplanned trip because I was already on my way to Makati from Marikina. But as I was already in Cubao, I might as well drop by one store just because I had to.
First, it was this vintage Gucci leather case with bamboo zipper pulls and gold hardware. The poor thing was just sitting on the eye-level shelf of a five layer rack for pouches and clutches, but I immediately recognized the zipper pulls even from afar. It baffles me how anyone would miss or ignore such iconic bamboo accents. Judging by how it originally looked, the leather body had already seen better days and had a lot of superficial stains. Those were perceivably enough deterrent to prevent anyone from picking it up. However, I knew right away that the leather used was one of those hardy Gucci leathers. A slight pressure from my thumb had removed a little smudge at the surface, and it was not something my trusted pair of leather cleaner and conditioner could not handle. Here’s a look at what it had looked before I restored it:
Before restoration of the vintage Gucci with bamboo zipper pulls
As usual, I am typing things through a stream of consciousness. I would have wanted to be more structured with how my points are presented on this ‘radical’ move, but most of my entries trying to make a strong point are done as an internal monologue anyway, thus the name ‘bryologue‘. What prompted me to totally quit Facebook? A more direct answer might have been exasperation with the general public, but I have this perfect opportunity to elaborate on the motivation.
First of all, I did not have an Instagram account, not until four weeks ago. I am still using a BlackBerry phone, and as we know, it does not have a native Instagram application. I got really curious with all the brouhaha on the likes and hashtags, and it seems that it is a prerequisite for people around my age to have one. I might be missing out on something. Now, I have a no-name Android tablet my father gave me a year ago when he went home, which I primarily use for reading Ebooks. The 4 gigabyte memory card capacity was rife with PDFs and Epubs I have illegally downloaded. I am ashamed to say this, but I finally gave in and created and Instagram account just to get over the curiosity of why people are crazy about it.
Albert Camus’s “L’Etranger” realized on Lego pieces
Last Friday, I asked my sister to drop by this leather supplies store in Marikina Public Market to buy a leather dye. I had a DIY project in mind, but it was so simple that it would probably not take more than ten minutes of my life to finish it. Since receiving a Bayswater from more than two years, I have only used it less than five times. As much as I love Mulberry and this Bayswater, I just can’t bring myself to lug it around each time by the handles. I wanted a nice leather strap to convert it to a messenger bag and breathe new life to it and end its eternal damnation inside the storage bin.
I was previously using a strap from another bag, but the “canvasness” of it just felt so wrong. Mulberry does not sell separate straps unlike other brands (i.e. Louis Vuitton). And even if they do, we no longer have any Mulberrys here. Rustan’s used to carry it before and I remember looking at two Elkingtons and a nylon clipper. But look at me blabbering about all of these — if there were Mulberry stores here and even if they sell straps separately, I don’t even have enough money to spare to buy one. My point was completely moot to start with. >_< LOL
Bye bye brown
I mentioned two years ago that I have already abandoned a DIY project. I still wasn’t able to find any acid dye here in Metro Manila to refurbish a tessuto robot tote from 2009. However, this unexpectedly turned up and it was whole again! That is exactly what I hate the most with these bags because they are made with separate components and you risk the chance of losing any parts when it gets snagged onto clothing or other things.
Two Tessuto Robot 6 tote bags
… that was the first thing I thought of when I stepped inside this enclosed and highly-guarded area in Manila. It was so — clean. So clean that it was impossible to believe that such an oasis exists in the heart of this bustling city. The walkway leading to the main office building was lined with flagpoles and flanked with two Japanese koi ponds. I had been into this area last year, when we were to renew our clearance from NBI. I always wondered how the place looked inside, knowing what it was. You won’t be able to see anything from the streets, and I don’t remember having a peek while the LRT traverses Taft avenue (or is it even visible from the railway?). One has to leave an identification by the gate, subject any bags for inspection, and get frisked by the guard before entering. There were barely any people walking by the excellently manicured lawn, and I was half-expecting children doing cartwheels on the grass. LOL
I had a couple of “appointments” (you very well know what I am talking about) in the Philippine office of this international organization. But as much as I want to put its name in writing, I fear that doing so might either jinx my chances or bring the panel into my website. Not that I have anything to hide, but I just don’t want the contents of my blog to influence the selection process. I am still hoping for the best and, of course, preparing for the worst. What’s the worst thing that can happen now, anyway?
The visitor’s badge
I was perusing over things in my room at home, specifically looking for a children’s book I got from my grade school library. However, it took me more than four hours to find it and in the process, I was able these. I had amassed a substantial amount of French and Italian books, as well as some of previous Vogue magazines I did not bring to the apartment with me. I also saw these two neckties and a catalog, and this damaged silk scarf also resurfaced. I completely forgot about the catalog and I can’t even remember why I had one. It was either given as a free gift by one of the sellers from Ebay when I was still buying more than selling, or I got it dirt cheap so I bought it anyway.
Language books and Vogue magazines
Look what I found
Last night, I have already conditioned myself that it would basically be a normal day. I woke up and ate breakfast the same time as I usually do every morning. But instead of sitting in front of the laptop having our usual SATC or movie marathon, I had to prepare for my first ever French class today. About a month ago, I decided to finally consider teaching French for beginners. I have honestly written off this prospect years ago, as I thought I was not teacher material. I could not go for a full-time work, though, as I do not wish to push my health that hard again. Last year’s two full-time work faux pas was literally a very costly lesson. Still, I did not lose that constant yearning to expand my horizons and seek opportunities other than what I am currently doing. I was just naturally a restless soul.
My first French lesson