Retail Therapy

re-contextualizing travel (with ghosts)

I finally found a natural counterbalance for all that dogged seeking. It didn’t matter if I was shopping in Scotland or sipping coffee in Savannah, the highlight of every trip was always the same, and somehow perfectly unique each time. Perhaps driven by a subconscious urge to recharge, I learned to ground myself with microdoses of actual human connection.


I travel a lot, but not because I love it. I don’t have some great passion for exotic cuisine or penchant for historical sites. I do it mainly because it’s something to do. Moving around a lot as a kid instilled a certain level of wanderlust in me, and working a remote job now means that if I see something cool on Instagram, I can usually figure out a way to go there. So I do. And with each trip I add to my stack of interesting anecdotes, but I won’t list “travel” as a hobby. My hobby is people.

from the mall

Outwardly, I feign sophisticated, picky interest, as the possibilities play in my head. Perhaps, I consider, this fresh lamb’s wool sweater will transport me from my current life to that of the adventurous Canadian isle fisherwoman from the catalog. I buy the lie of consumerism and, often, I buy the sweater too.