I fail at shawpping.

On Long Island, NY, they pronounce coffee… cawfee. Daughter is dawtah.  Dog is dawg. Beer is beah. There’s a plethora of w’s and h’s in their speech that leaves you wondering if these wonderful, funny, generous people are being serious. Like, do you really talk like this, all the time?

“We’ll grab a cawfee once my dawter gets up. The dawg usually wakes her up when he bawks.”

My love and I had an adventure in a far distant land. We drove eighteen hours to Long Island from Nova Scotia… where is it said that we also have a strange accent, but I dunno wut yer talkin’ aboot, cuz we don’t say nuthin’ weerd heeyah… that’s heeyah, as in here… the purpose of our adventure was to annoy the border security.

No, that was just a bonus.

We went to breed a dog.  International canine romance.  My love breeds Chesapeake Bay Retrievers and the love connection was being pimped out in Long Island. That’s “Lowng Oyland”.

For us in Nova Scotia, going to the States means shopping. I have friends… lovely, fashionable friends who own more than one pair of shoes and more than five pair of underwear… what? One for each day of the week. Weekends are panty free laundry days… anyway… my stylish friends go shopping in Maine a couple of times a year, and they come home with BARGAINS! A plethora of shopping delights, and as a result, they don’t wear the same outfits to work every week. Like some of us. Who shall remain nameless.

I do not shop. I own two pair of jeans and three sweaters and five panties. I haven’t owned a fall jacket since I was fifteen. I use a black marker to hide the scuff  marks on my five year old womanly shoes. I asked my shopping friends where I should go to shop, determined that I too would bask in the commercial glow of cheap clothes, coming home with baskets of new outfits and five-dolla shoes, the accumulation of which they make seem so effortless.

The Christmastree Shop, I was told. Marstens. Target. The Dress Barn. LLBean.

The Salvation Army Thrift Store, my daughter said. She knows me best.

My love, the Great Camo Hunter, drew a straight line from our front door to the parking lot of Cabela’s. Dick’s. And several other outfitter’s along the way. I was perfectly happy with this, because Cabela’s has a HUGE display of stuffed everything from zebra to groundhogs and if you can’t enjoy a good taxidermy display there’s something wrong with you.

We bought hunting supplies. We encouraged romantic canine liaisons. We ate gumbo made by our delightful hosts while we teased them about their accents. I fretted about the shopping.

I bought a tank top and a pair of flipflops. That’s it.

We’re allowed to bring $800 of goods back across the border… I spend $12.95.  Not for lack of trying… we went to all the recommended shopping venues… I just couldn’t do it! I can’t spend American money any easier than I can spend Canadian money! I am doomed to go panty-less every weekend for the rest of my unfashionable days!

“If you wanna go shawpping, I can take you to the mawll aftah my dawtah has her breakfast.”

Even with the gentle intervention of our hosts, my wardrobe remains woefully bare.

I fail at shawpping.

I did buy a kayak, though. It’s green. Me and my shitzu, Max, happily paddle around the river and it is probably the best purchase I’ve ever made. Is it a problem that I paddle naked?

Max in the kayak on the Medway
Max in the kayak on the Medway

Thanks for reading! Check out my novels, available in print and ebook on amazon.com.


Available now on Amazon
Available now on Amazon

4 thoughts on “I fail at shawpping.

Add yours

  1. Sent here by your post on the Goodreads blogger’s thread, and I’m loving your writing style!

    I spent the first twenty-one years of my life on Long Island and had a super-strong accent, even as a little girl. When I moved to Pennsylvania, I learned to hide it. Long Island will always have my heart, but now “dog” rhymes with “frog.” 🙂

  2. While visiting the southern US, my husband & I were asked where we were from the lady knew we weren’t Americans because “Yall gotta acsent !”

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