Back in the day when I only traveled for fun, and had ample time to pack, I wondered just who ever shopped at the airport.
Why were airports turning into malls? Shoe stores, jewelry stores, makeup stores, clothing stores… why would you EVER need to shop here when malls and shopping areas abound outside the terminal, you know, for normal people?
Fast forward ten years, and here I am, standing at NINE West in the Pittsburgh airport, whispering a silent wish to the shoe gods; “please carry size 9.5, please carry size 9.5.”. I’m desperate. I’m about to board a plane to a conference where I will be on my feet all week but the simple black ballet flats I thought I had, I gave away last year. No luck. So I begin to accept the blisters my stylish but clunky spectators are going to give me.
On the plane. Finally look at my agenda. It becomes clear I have ample time upon arrival in Scottsdale for a hike in the mountains or a run or something. Yippee!!! Again, I am hit with the realization that in my haste to pack I have not packed anything close to active wear. So now I begin to hope that the Phoenix airport will have a Nike store, or a GAP where I can get shorts and a t-shirt. I start rationalizing the high price I will probably have to pay for said active wear and have accepted it. We arrive, and the only shop in my terminal sells lollipops with scorpions inside. NOT helpful!
When you’re working full time and raising two children, some things fall through the cracks. For me, it’s shopping and packing. I used to be a whiz at both. Now, I’m master of neither.
Get to my lovely hotel and of course they sell overpriced short-sleeved t-shirts for women like me who do their shopping in airports. I buy one. I’m outta luck for shoes though. I’ve compromised, so me and my stylish spectators and overpriced t-shirt take a stroll not in the mountains, but around the relatively flat and well-groomed grounds.
I bet the person who decided to build retail in airports is a woman. Maybe you opted to spend those last minutes at home with your kids instead of making sure you had what you needed in your luggage. And you found yourself being one of those people I used to judge for shopping in the airport. Please – keep up the good work. I need you, more than I ever thought I would.
Journey On, Jane. 👚