As of this writing, my wristwatch and waterproof ankle boots (boots truly made for long-distance, high-intensity, all-terrain, conquering-Kilimanjaro walking) are in the shop. I assumed the boots would get left overnight, but since when is an Anne Klein watch, in need of a new battery, treated as an in-patient?
In June, I will have lived in my current, Gentrification-Gone-Wild neighborhood for seven years. I usually still get watches, shoes, and bags fixed in one of my old neighborhoods, where I lived for one year, at a mom-and-pop (or, more accurately, a pop-and-pop) shop that has declined to give itself a name - there’s just a Watch Repair/Shoe Repair shingle hanging above a hole in the wall. I’ve continued to travel there for repairs out of loyalty toward, and comfort with, the two crabby, yet kind, pops who rule the den. The slightly younger pop and I are so comfortable with each other that neither of us will show a single sign of embarrassment if he’s pulling his pants back on after hearing me schlep through the door. They perk up when I thank and compliment them in Russian, and once wouldn’t hear of charging me for another job, impeccably done.
The problem is that I’m not a spring chicken anymore. I can’t burden myself with running basic errands outside of my residential or professional turfs. The other day, I took my boots to a shoe repair “lab,” which also dabbles in watches, around the corner from where I now live. I was charged twice as much as I’m used to and formed no insta-rapport with the laboratory technicians. I don’t trust them.
As penance for cheating on my downtown pops, forfeiting quality and/or care for convenience, this week I’m bringing them a 14-year-old handbag (that I tote around on an almost daily basis; that’s been on its last threads for years and was about to get thrown out) for a tune-up.