Thursday, October 29, 2009

Hi. My name is Renee, and I'm an op-shopaholic.

Those who know me well, know that my favourite past time is to shop for bargains in second-hand stores, whether they be toys, books or clothes.

Since moving to Hong Kong I have suffered severe withdrawal symptoms due to the lack of op-shops here.

Despite the wealth of this country (or maybe because of that same wealth) the people here dislike purchasing something that has been used, even cars. One's appearance is a good indication of one's income, and often the flashier the better. Another reason there is little demand for second hand items is for fear that they might be from a deceased estate. Hong Kongese are very superstitious about death and its association with bad luck.

Therefore, I have had to unsatisfactorily feed my op-shop habit through online sources like eBay, Oztion, and Gumtree.

One night while shopping with Lauren I chanced upon this Salvation Army store which was closed, like a mirage in a desert teases the thirsty traveller.

Yesterday it would have been nine weeks and two days since my last visit to an op-shop.

However, yesterday we went to Stanley.

And Stanley has an op-shop.

My understanding husband took our three children for a slow walk around the block and told me to take my time.

Which I did.

And it was wonderful.

I glanced through the clothes. I perused the kitchen utensils. I inspected the toys. I scrutinised the shoes. And I examined the books.

I didn't spend much money.

But, oh, I enjoyed the looking!

And hopefully that fix will last me for a few more weeks until I can find another elusive Hong Kong op-shop.