We are studying American History these days.
It came to my attention tonight that we need to secure materials for an American Civil War, Union Soldier costume.
In Mexico City.
Now, don’t get me wrong, I’m super excited that American history is being taught and thrilled that we are covering it in an engaging and interactive way. But, I’m quickly learning that any school project has a learning curve for me.
After receiving the above image in my inbox, a sketch of the costume we needed to replicate, I headed off to the fabric store. I happened to know where it is, as I have walked past it several times. I walked in and asked for “oro buttons”. The first sales girl looked at me and said,“I don’t understand you.” And she walked away.
I had practiced saying the word, “botóns” all the way to the store. I knew I was pronouncing the word correctly, so I followed her down the counter.
She was not excited.
An older sales lady saw the train to nowhere and stepped in. She helped me out. We secured 8 oro (gold) botóns, thread, and ribbon. As we were picking out the ribbon, I noticed that the sales lady had her wallet stashed in her bra. I whipped my iPhone out of my bra and flashed it at her. She was elated. And, a lot more helpful and willing to teach me all of the words I needed to know in the notions store.
It’s amazing how random things can bond people.
The sales lady merrily helped me get all of the sewing notions I needed and directed me to a young man to secure my fabric. Suddenly, I went from annoying American, to sister-friend.
After we selected all of our items we went to the cash register and paid the cashier. Then we headed to a second register where we picked up our merchandise. All in all we worked with two employees in buttons, one man in fabric, two people at the register (and we paid in cash), and one woman at the receive-your-purchase counter. Six different people for $10.00 in purchases.
I am always amazed at the number of people it takes to accomplish the simplest task here–and how one person with a willing or willful attitude can make things easy or impossible!