I drove up to Little Rock this weekend to shop with my daughter for a bridesmaid dress for her brother's wedding this fall. We also shopped some for me a MOG (Mother of the Groom) dress. Truly an exhausting two days. This morning we shopped in North Little Rock and Conway. Our first stop was a bridal shop that Elisabeth had visited before when shopping with a bridal friend. They did not have anything to suit her, but I decided to look around. A meek little sales girl was going to help me. When we told her we were looking for a MOG dress, she asked her boss about it. Her boss, a lady around my age, pointed to the rear of the store and barked, "Go get Mother and watch." Apparently she was new, and rushed to do as told. Soon Mother swept in and started pulling dresses right and left. I was able to get some emphatic "NO's" in occasionally, before we trouped back to the dressing room. It was way too many people, and they were all at least a foot shorter than me, it seemed like. I felt like a St. Bernard surrounded by enthusiastic terriers. My mood deteriorated rapidly. Nothing fit. "Mother" kept going on about taking up here, adding there, available in certain colors, etc. I finally explained to her that I had quite a bit of seamstress experience and training, and I was not about to make a decision on a dress that fit as poorly as what she was showing me. She backed down in a hurry, though pleasant, and we escaped.
We moved on to downtown Conway, scene of the recent Kris Allen parade. Banners on the lamp posts touted Conway as the home of Kris Allen, and every single store window was painted with signs welcoming the American Idol. Shopping in downtown Conway was mostly for Elisabeth. We didn't end up buying anything but lunch. Most interesting was what we had to do to get seated in the restaurant. Conway is in a "dry" county. Liquor can only be sold in private clubs. The restaurants get around this by charging a dollar for membership. Only one person in a family pays the onetime fee, and it is good for life for all family members. It doesn't matter if you are going to drink or not. You have to be a member to be seated in any restaurant that serves alcohol. After we were seated, our waitress came along. She asked where we were from, and when I said I was from Louisiana, she said her family was from there. It turned out her family was from Gibsland, my father's home town. I remembered her great grandfather and her great-great aunts. My great grandparents sold their property to her family when they left Gibsland, though we still own some adjacent land. She spent all her childhood summers in their old family home there. Really small world.
On the way back to Little Rock from Conway, I decided to call my hair dresser. I had left a message on her machine requesting an appointment the week before, and had not heard from her. I tried her mobile phone, and found her, in Houston. She had fallen and broken her hip in Galveston, and had just gotten out of the hospital after eleven days. She had surgery, including some pins in her leg and hip. She will be in Houston with relatives quite awhile recovering. I am afraid my hair is going to get pretty wooly before she returns. It already is resembling Crabman from My Name is Earl some mornings.
We shopped a little more in Little Rock, and then I headed back to Collinston. It was good to drive up the driveway and see that the grass seems to be slowing down some, meaning it still looked like it had been mowed.