I like a blazer.
A blazer is nice to throw on this time of year, as a jacket. They usually have good pockets (always handy) and add a touch of class to whatever else I’m wearing. I’ve had a couple blazers that I purchased new, but I’ve also gotten a lot of good use out of some that have come to me in other ways.
About twenty years ago, my friend, Chris, and I stopped into the Re-Sale Shop here on Beaver Island. The Re-Sale Shop was still in its old location, in the old Livery building. Chris was looking for rags, for her husband’s garage. I was just keeping her company. My daughter, Kate, could spend twenty minutes and two dollars there, and come out looking like a million bucks. I could spend a lot more, and would look like I’d dressed out of the rag-bag. I just didn’t have the knack for it. On this day, however, someone had just dropped off a pile of suits. I bought three jackets: two in different shades of gray with a very subtle stripe, one in a nice tan tweed. I still have them, and still get compliments whenever I wear them!
The blazer pictured here is not one of the new ones, nor one of the treasures found at the Re-Sale Shop. It is one that my daughter, Jen, bought…new…a long time ago…when this look was stylish. She gave it to me more than ten years ago. It’s obviously seen a bit of wear. It has snags and tears from being worn on my walks through blackberry brambles. The elbows are worn; the lining is torn. Still, it’s a nice jacket to throw on as an extra layer, when looks don’t matter. Turns out, it still manages to dress up a look, in a pinch.
Last Sunday, I had a ten o’clock flight scheduled, to go to the mainland for the day, to visit my aunt in the hospital. I had planned ahead so that it would be a stress-free day. Then I overslept. Eight o’clock, Sunday morning. I had to make coffee, shower, dress, and walk my dogs. I had to leave myself enough time to stop at the farmhouse to pick up several books and a robe for Aunt Katie, and the keys to the mainland car. I’d promised her I’d also take her dog out for a walk while I was there. I had to be at the airport by 9:30!
Okay, I started the coffee brewing. If I was going to fit everything in, I had to walk my dogs right away. I was in my pajamas. The dogs didn’t mind. We took the path through the field to the logging road, then crossed Fox Lake Road to Cotter’s trail. We walked the half-mile down to the cabin, then circled around by the pole barns, then on the trail through the woods to the new Murray place, and back out to Fox Lake Road to head back to my house.
I was almost home when I heard the car. I checked to make sure Clover was off the road, and swooped Rosa Parks up into my arms. Dogs safe, I then remembered how I was dressed. Brown jersey pajama bottoms, sagging at the fanny, bagging at the knees; pink flowered T-shirt top; navy blue and gray argyle socks pulled up over the cuffs of the pajama bottoms; red and black slip-on Hush Puppies. And the blazer. I hadn’t brushed my hair; I hadn’t brushed my teeth. There was no place to hide.
The car drove up, slowed down and came to a stop. The window came down. “You look awfully nice,” I heard, “All dressed up to be out walking the dogs!”