A Travel Story That Ends with a New Bal Bag

pr1nc355

Orange Pyramid
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May 24, 2006
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I just got back from a wonderful vacay to the beautiful countries of Turkey and Greece. So many beautiful sites, so I thought I'd share some of them with my tpf friends.

I started out in Istanbul:




I traveled to many other cities in Turkey, then ended up in Santorini. This island is so breathtaking that I joked to my friends that I'm getting married there (although I'm not even remotely close to getting married--but I'll make it happen:P):


In Santorini, I picked up a few trinkets for some friends and family members from some shops in the main alleyway:


I spent the last day of my trip on a tour of Athens, climbing the steep tall steps to the Parthenon:


I made it to my hotel at 6:30pm on my last day. I got directions from the concierge, who assured me that it would be a 10-minute walk to Hermes max. I looked forward to treating myself, as I usually do on the last days of my trips, after I buy gifts for friends and family. With my map in hand, I headed out into the street and suddenly found myself lost. I couldn't read the street signs and got confused. I asked anyone who made any kind of eye contact with me if they knew how to get there. One very helpful Greek guy even pulled his motorcycle over to look at my map to see if he could help, but he apologized and couldn't. I ran up and down streets and alleys, finally hailing a cab. The driver took me to a street supposedly parallel to Hermes, as he said he was prohibited from stopping directly in front of the boutique. I walked in the direction he told me to, but couldn't find it. I looked at my watch--it was 7:20pm. I had missed my opportunity to shop at Hermes and was sweating from running around. I got frustrated and angry with myself, but quickly stopped. I had nothing to complain about. I was on this beautiful trip with people I loved, and Hermes boutiques are all over the world. I work literally 2 miles away from one. Not having any particular place to go, I wandered the streets of Athens again and found myself in front of a department store called Attica. I went inside and up the escalator to the 4th floor, where the designer handbags were sold.

Then I spotted my "souvenir" in a department called "Free Shop", on a shelf, a beautiful Bal bag. I asked the SA to take it off the shelf so I could have a closer look. He told me a little about Free Shop, that they're actually a chain of boutiques in Greece, with a store-in-store in Attica Athens. He also said that each boutique sells out of Bal bags very quickly and the two on the shelf, the one I saw and a black Arena flat crossbody, were literally the only ones left there. So, here's my souvenir wrapped up in front of the home from where I adopted her:
 
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pr1nc355

Orange Pyramid
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May 24, 2006
5,009
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And here she is, finally at home, a 2014 Charbon City:


Not only is this a souvenir from Greece, but it's also a birthday present for me, which I celebrated today!

I realized I came full circle in one area of my life with this bag. Back in my 20s, when I was fresh out of graduate school and really should've been saving more money, I blew a significant portion of my savings on a red City (don't remember the color name, and honestly, I don't think I bothered to find out) at Barneys. I had it for a couple of months, then realized I shouldn't have bought it and sold it thru a consignment business and received only about half the retail price in profits. I got a great job and actually started making enough to be able to afford luxury items, pay my bills, AND save responsibly. I thought about buying another City, but it wasn't a priority for me. When I saw this one, I knew it had to be mine, and I had been looking for a chocolate bag, so it was perfect:biggrin:

:ty:for letting me share!
 

BDgirl

Member
May 12, 2010
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La La Land
Thanks for the story. Kudos for earning your own dough to get your lovely city. You made me want to visit turkey now.
 

Lakotan

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Feb 9, 2011
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What a wonderful story, thank you for sharing and for the beautiful pictures! Your new purse is lovely, congratulations!
 

pr1nc355

Orange Pyramid
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May 24, 2006
5,009
77
Thank you, BDgirl, RightasRain, Lakotan, Ms. Bagaholic, & etien! Happy to share.
 

pr1nc355

Orange Pyramid
O.G.
May 24, 2006
5,009
77
Thanks for the story. Kudos for earning your own dough to get your lovely city. You made me want to visit turkey now.
I highly recommend Turkey. They have resorts, ancient and modern architecture, shopping, great food, and much more!