Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Last of the Mohicans- I mean- Brides...

Saturday was a crazed day for me. After working a full week already, convincing my body to remove my legs from the warm comforter at 630 AM and plant my feet on the ground was a difficult task. I had to be back at work by 815, clean, fed, awake and chipper to boot.  "Why?" you ask? Well, it was our final sample sale at Priscilla of Boston. You can read more about it here and here. It was certainly a whirlwind of emotions....

WHITE MARKET: Brides-to-be, including...
by Mark Garfinkel
I sped to work, making it in record time, forgetting there isn't rush hour on Saturday mornings.  Oh right. Most people are still in bed.  Where I should be.  Where Matt is. Jealous. I whip around the corner of the building, aiming for our parking lot entrance when I see the full lot in front of me.  That lot is never full. EVER. I look over my left shoulder at the door, I see the beginning of the line.  Girls lined up 4 people deep.  Some sitting on the ground, some brought lawn chairs in anticipation of the long wait, some drinking coffees and chatting with their new friends they made in line. Then I look further back, and further back more, and yet more.   The line goes down the street and around the block.  It was 8:15 AM and the doors weren't supposed to be open until 9.  My jaw dropped and I whispered to myself "Holy fucking shit."  I pull up to the opening of our parking lot with my jaw dropped.  There were women sitting on the sidewalk, blocking the entrance.   I rolled down my window and said "Excuse me ladies, may I get by?" And they stood in unison and parted like the red seas.

Once I got inside, everyone was just a tad bit manic.  It must have just been the nervous energy to get the day started.   But none of us were expecting that many people to be waiting.  I guess more people knew about us than we'd thought?  We waited, finishing the rest of our coffees and munching on muffins until the clock hit 9 AM.  The media was already there, photographing the patiently waiting line and the madness that ensued once the doors were opened.  But immediately after,  all the men were forced out and it was just us gals left on the floor.  The first brides {and their cohorts} had been there since 4:30 that morning. I can't even imagine. They  ran in furiously grabbing any gown in sight that had even the slightest bit of interest.  I suspect they were expecting our sample sale to be akin to the Running of the Brides that happens annually at Filenes Basement.  However, we keep things a bit more wrangled.  We provide mirrors, support {yours truly} and moderate how many people are allowed in at a time. The line outside maintained for hours.

It all went by in a blur. A long, arduous blur... but a blur nonetheless. I felt at the time that I wasn't doing much of anything except pacing back and forth, keeping an eye out for a girl that needed help or an opinion.  In hindsight, there was lots of picking up gowns and putting them back on racks at the beginning of the day.  But by the end, everything was so mixed up there was no way to put the gowns back in any semblance of order.  Many girls were very nice, hung their gowns when they were done, shared the mirrors and candy-sweet compliments with their fellow brides. But some heaped gowns in piles on the floor, discarded as if they don't want it, must be garbage.  It was sad.  These corpses of wedding days that will never happen. 

I feel as though I bonded with a few of the girls. There were 3 or 4 that gave me a hug at the end of their stay, thanking me for my help. It feels good.  Sometimes having a desk job behind a computer, despite being in the bridal industry, you forget that what you do, actually is important.  My job makes women feel beautiful on one of the most special and memorable days of their lives.  But when you're staring at a computer and all you field are the complaints, you forget the emotion involved.  But standing there, on the floor with brides and their best friends, mothers, and sisters and they slip a dress over their head and everyone goes silent, in an effort to choke back tears... it is a moment that I hold near and dear to my heart and I was allowed to be a part of it.

As 7 PM rolled around, we were picking up all those discarded dresses, throwing away broken hangers, and ringing out the last woman, who suspiciously had been there the entire day, had bought 1 wedding dress and about 30 different bridesmaids dresses.  {And had done the same thing last sample sale... hmmmm...} As she took her sweet time leaving, we all were moaning and groaning and itching to go home.

I got home, hurriedly took a shower {or... hurried as much as I could because I was hobbling at this point. 11 hours of standing does not agree with me apparently...}   and got ready for a night out with friends. And as we walked into the bar, greeted by friends, we slid into the cold, leather booth.  With Matt's hand on my knee, I sipped my Shipyard Pumpkinhead beer, and I finally took a breath.  I felt like I hadn't done that once the whole day. I slept so deeply that night.


All of us in the office are still all recovering from the manic event. I'm sure most of the 4:30 AM brides are too.  We have sore backs, stiff knees and catch ourselves and each other tapering off mid-sentence only to stare off into nothing, falling asleep with our eyes open.  Our boss was kind enough to buy all of us lunch yesterday as a thank you. I am happy to have been a part of the last sample sale Priscilla's will ever see and yet I am so very, very sad.

1 comment:

Heya Nesters! I always love your feedback! So dish, because we all want to hear it! <3