Her booth at the Craft Fair was just catty-corner behind the booth I was visiting. When I first glimpsed her, I thought, “My word, we have a visitor from another time here today!” A time that never was, indeed.
She wore a corset on the outside of her gown. A gown much too adorned for modern times and much too short for the Victorian times, which the fabric, cut and adornments otherwise suggested. Her headpiece was a cross between ladies’ and men’s wear (like a mini-top hat) with a bit of netting (tulle perhaps?) attached as a headband and terminating in a poofy train at the back rather than the veil one might expect. The best part of the costume-that-wasn’t-a-costume were the lovely Victorian-esque boot-shoes! Her clothes indeed blended the best of the modern day and the Victorian age with ease and apparent comfort.
Besides her eye-catching apparel, this woman possessed an air of kindness and a sparkle of intelligence and self-confidence I haven’t encountered in a lot of women recently. The aura of gentleness mingled with the edgy exuberance of her public persona made me curious as to her backstory and what it must be like to occupy a place in her inner circle. Her eyes twinkled when she smiled and the flush in her cheeks was an inner glow, not from a bottle. She was a woman of a certain age, a person who has experienced life and lived to tell about it – but who was too clever to drop names.
She easily could have stepped from a time machine directly into our midst at that Craft Fair on that sunny Saturday. Her mission? To observe free enterprise at the community level? To track crafting traditions through generations? Did she come from a timeline where craftsmanship has been lost? Was she sent to recover something or someone? We may never know…do time travelers ever visit the same timeline twice?
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