For the past few years, my stepfather has been working abroad. He’ll be off in another country for months at a time, and he’s had the opportunity to live in France, Switzerland, Ireland, China, and several other countries. Recently he was assigned again to Paris–this time for a long enough time period that his company opted to rent an apartment for him instead of having him stay at a hotel. My mother loves visiting Paris, so she went to see him at the end of October this year.
Although I have never been out of the country, I have several family members who often travel abroad. My mother wanted to bring back souvenirs or little regional gifts when she went to Paris, but that becomes more and more difficult the more frequently it is visited. (There are only so many “PARIS” t-shirts that a person really wants, after all~) However, since I have never actually been there myself I couldn’t come up with something more specific–like a certain candy bar or a certain inexpensive cosmetic.
I decided to ask for a picture of the BABY, the Stars Shine Bright boutique. I couldn’t justify asking for anything from the shop itself; I didn’t know what would be in stock and almost everything would be out of my mother’s budget. I didn’t want my family to think I was just using them to shop, so I didn’t want a long specific list or to ask them go into the store. Just a vacation photo of the shop’s facade, taken by my mother, was what I wanted.
However, my mother and stepfather took my request very deeply to heart! They started researching the store, reading the blog, and browsing the Japanese website. My mother wanted to talk to me or look up information about lolita fashion, determined to know as much as possible–because they decided they were going to go into the shop and have a look around.
For the most part my family did not really approve of my hobby, but things have really changed now! My mother sent me cellphone pictures of the store and several emails to tell about it even before she returned home. She adored the shoes on display; she kept trying to describe them to me, lamenting that none were in stock in my size. My stepfather realized it is located near a cafe he frequents, and offered to drop by the store if I wanted him to pick something up for me at a later date.
And, they bought me a pair of socks. ♥ They decided to get me something, and socks were the most affordable, easy to pack, and less difficult to select. I now have a lovely pair of pink knee socks embroidered with pink macarons decorated with tiny sparkling rhinestones~ Even more wonderful than the socks themselves is the love that went into the gift. I can’t believe they actually bought something!