For me, browsing the offerings of The Vermont Country Store is a little like clearing out the house of an elderly relative who’s died.
Tender sentiments and pity mingle with embarrassment and faint revulsion.
I let my mind drift, and I’m in a house stacked with mildewed copies of the Walter Drake catalog and with issues of Yankee Magazine and Reader’s Digest. There’s a coffee table. Hard candies are fused together on “cut-glass” Anchor Hocking trays, and the sticky film of long-gone ginger ale adheres within jewel-toned metal tumblers. There’s a closet filled with muumuus and “house-dresses” that are muumuus and nightgowns that are muumuus. On a dressing table there’s a Wind Song bottle. The eau de cologne has evaporated. On the floor under the dressing table, a few mint-green Spoolies holding tangled strands of thin hair.
I like to believe that what I leave behind will not be so easy to sum up, so true to type. I’m sure I am wrong. I try to imagine a commercial catalog of my belongings and the person for whom it may hold a sad allure.