G’s sister and niece are absolutely charming, and funny. And unfortunately the trip nearly did them in.
It was more than 24 hours for them between flight time and layovers, from the time they left their home until they got here. Add to that time to rent a vehicle and get checked into the hotel and it was killer. They didn’t sleep well the first night but arrived yesterday afternoon at the house here, and we did a short tour of the area (about an hour) and came back here for a late lunch/early dinner, then they headed back to the hotel. (They were invited to stay here but had already made the other arrangements.)
At their request we hit a mall today, specifically Arizona Mills mall in Tempe. It’s a big complex, though by no means the largest. I didn’t think about the fact that these folks live in a smallish area, so compared to what they have at home, this was HUGE. That alone was enough, but poor niece was plagued with a headache all day long. She still plugged through because she simply wanted to see all the various little shops. We chose Arizona Mills for that reason – more unique shops, less outrageously expensive options. We did go through a couple of pricey options on principle, though. Neiman Marcus has an outlet store there. The purses were only about $250 and clothing ranged around $200 for a jacket, $100-ish for a shirt. A tank top was a bargain at $89.
How about no? How does NO work for you?
We saw another place too – don’t remember the name, not one I recognized – where the OUTLET pricing for a pair of boots was $600. They were the ugliest boots I’ve ever seen, hands-down. We were discussing the fact that their $600 boots and $500 handbags were significantly cheaper looking than the authentic ones at Saba that ran $150-200 for the boots. I don’t remember on the purses; they were pricey at Saba but not $500, that’s for sure! Difference is, Saba deals with things worn and used by actual cowboys and ranchers. The boots are the kind that when the soles wear out, you get them re-soled. They’re work boots, mostly, though there are some pretty nice looking ones with elaborate stitching and some cool colored trim.
Aside from the ridiculous overpriced crap, we also hit the reasons we actually went there in the first place. Niece found some cute goodies for her children from an Arizona touristy-souvenir shop, and we found some nice baubles at the rock shop. I discovered that both ladies are big jewelry lovers, with a budget on par with my own. The mall is NOT the place to buy jewelry. I did have the ladies pick out their pendants from the rock store and will be making them each a necklace (along with a necklace for the niece who didn’t get to make the trip.)
Too tired tonight to go into much more detail than that. I’ll write more when conscious.