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smart shopper

for christmas, i gave two filipino secretary friends vera bradley bags (one a little backpack, the other a little shoulder bag) that i got on sale from the vera bradley site. i'm not a fan, but i do think that the prints and quilting are cute in moderation. plus these friends are considerably older than i am, so i figured they wouldn't be totally weirded out by the notion that i was giving them printy quilty cotton purses.

vera bradley isn't cheap. i usually don't like to spend too much on work xmas gifts, so i'm always confused by what to get these secretaries. last year i got one a silver mirrored compact, the other (i'm much closer to her) i got a coach wristlet. this year, i didn't know what to do. somehow i ended up on the vera bradley site. they were having a really good sale, so i bought what i bought (plus another bag for a secretary who was unfortunately laid off, so i was unable to give it to her).

anyway, i finally gave one of those secretaries a thank-you card (she bought gifts for me and both kids) the other day. she emailed me that she was glad we liked everything, etc. etc etc., and then, much to my surprise, thanked me yet again for the bag. apparently she had looked up vera bradley (not already being familiar with it) and was very pleased to see that it was, in her words, "a good brand." i was somewhat on the verge of horror.

i told my mother about this. such a filipino thing to do, i said. "really, what other people that you know would look up the brand and then actually SAY SOMETHING about it?" how gauche! she laughed and agreed. i was a little embarrassed that my friend then would have seen that i had bought the bag on sale, but when i thought about it, "filipinos don't pay retail, right?" we are supposed to be all about a sale.

she laughed and had to agree with that, too.



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