Saturday, February 13, 2010

Fleece Explosion

The planets aligned a week ago Sunday, and all six of the Favorite Female Friends gathered at the Boathouse to celebrate Carol’s and Beth’s birthdays. You know the world is too complex when it takes half a dozen emails followed by as many phone calls just to set up a lunch with friends – but we did it.

Everyone looked great, and we admired one another as we sat at the table by the fireplace. Carol had on a magenta fleece jacket, a color that looks great on her. I said so. “I don’t wear sweaters anymore,” she said. “I wear fleece jackets instead. You can easily adjust when you are too warm or when you feel chilly.”

I replied that I used to have two fleece jackets, but when I got smaller, they went to the resale shop, and I have not replaced them. Carol continued to praise all things fleece. Judy mentioned everything was on sale at Eddie Bauer, including fleece. I said maybe I would get myself a new fleece jacket. Carol jumped up and urged me to try on hers. It fit – and she said I should keep it.

Keep it? “Are you sure?” I asked. “It’s wonderful!” Carol hugged me and laughed, and that was that. The six of us have been friends for 35 years, and that is how are with one another – but what a delightful surprise.

Tally: One fleece jacket.

On the way home from lunch, I stopped at Eddie Bauer. I bought a long-sleeved tee shirt marked down to $9. The next day, I popped back into the store to buy another shirt in a different color. I know from experience that you can pay twice that for a quality shirt at a resale shop. There, hanging next to the shirt I planned to buy, was a red fleece jacket marked half off and then discounted even further as per the sale of the day. I bought it.

Tally: Two fleece jackets.

I own a fleece vest. I bought it for $10 at the Alpine Shop at an end-of-winter sale half a dozen years ago. After I bought the red jacket, I looked on the Eddie Bauer web site to see what fleece vests were selling for, as I had not seen any I liked at the store. I browsed L.L.Bean’s web site. Then I looked on ebay. There I found several fleece vests, but the deal I liked best was two from Land’s End for $25 – with free shipping. I bought them. They arrived, and they are wonderful, in perfect condition.

Tally: Two fleece jackets, three fleece vests (counting the one I already owned.)

“Can I sleep in my fleece jackets?” I wondered one night as I crawled into my new bed. I love my new bed – see the previous post – but the sheets are COLD when I first crawl in. Before I bought the new bed, I had slept on a heated waterbed for at least 25 years. I miss that heater! When I whined to friends, everyone suggested flannel sheets.

I did the research, and discovered that women of a certain age who experience sudden temperature fluctuations at night don’t do all that well with flannel sheets. I also discovered that fleece sheets are now available, and that fleece wicks away perspiration. Fleece sheets, one web site claimed, are perfect year ‘round – not too cold and not too hot.

As I lay in bed pondering the idea of fleece sheets, I reached over to pet Maggie, who sleeps on a small fleece blanket I bought to keep the cat off the comforter. (Sometimes, it even works.) “That feels good,” I thought. The next day, I bought some fleece sheets on line.

I washed them. I dried them. I put them on the bed. I was skeptical. That night, I crawled into bed. My bed was warm! My bed was fuzzy! My bed, which previously had been cold and crisp and not at all welcoming, was warm and fuzzy -- and I was immensely happy. I slept well – so well that when morning came, I did not want to get out from under the warm, fuzzy sheets. When I did get up, I went on line and found the same sheets for half price on an end-of-season sale, and I bought a second set.

Tally: Two fleece jackets, three fleece vests, two sets of fleece sheets.

I’m set, I said to myself. I am prepared for any occasion that calls for fleece. The very day after I swore off purchasing another single thing, fleece or otherwise, I found a reversible fleece vest in my size at a resale shop. It cost $9. I bought it. You do the math for the final tally.

And I do mean final.

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