Monday, July 18, 2016

How I Became THAT Girl

I am not a pink and pretty, pampered and pedicured, foo-foo girl. Not that there's anything wrong with that. It just seems out of my reach. Except for the pink part. I make pink look fierce.

I'm just not that girl.

Nor am I a fix-a-flat, hawk-n-spit, tomboy-girl. I have enough trouble putting my old, hand-crank pencil sharpener back together, and I always forget to spit with the wind, not agin' it.

I'm not that girl, either.

That said, I'm no stranger to hiking in the woods, playing in the mud, or sweating (if need be). I would just prefer to be wearing a color-coordinated outfit and appropriate footwear while doing it.

So why was I hiking along the muddy banks of the Minnehaha Creek in downtown Minneapolis, wearing fitted, white capris, a swingy, trapeze tank top, and strappy, wedge heels?

I'm not that girl.

What can I say? Assumptions were made. Lessons were learned.

It all started with the prospect of a Girl's Weekend Out. It all started with the promise of shopping, and a fancy dinner, and a Very Special Birthday celebration for a Very Special Friend.

Let me point out that there usually is no difference between my “goin' to the mall” outfit and my “goin' to the woods” outfit -- or my “settin' on the couch” outfit, for that matter. My go-to, “goin' to” outfit usually consists of jeans or jean shorts, a t-shirt, and running shoes. The stores where I usually shop end with “-Mart.” My idea of fine dining is anything I don't order from my car.

Still, we were headin' to the Big City. We were headin' to The Big Mall, yes, that one, America. And we were helping a friend celebrate a Big Birthday (the latest to join the “Who's Counting” club). I didn't want to look like I just fell off the turnip truck.

My travelin' partner-in-crime always looks effortlessly put together. And the birthday girl always looks perky and classy. I always look like I just fell off the turnip truck.

But this was a Girl's Weekend. A Girl's Weekend with four women traveling in one car with one small hatchback for luggage and shopping bags. I did NOT want to be that girl. The one with a pile of luggage and different shoes for each outfit. So I packed light. Extremely light. As in one-outfit-per day light. I brought just two pairs of shoes, chosen for fashion, not function.

Prior to this excursion, during this month alone, I have hiked muddy trails through overgrown woods, explored caves, waded through creeks, zoomed down a mountain (ok, a hill) on an alpine slide, struggled to keep up with some serious Fitbit fanatics, and participated in a mini-triathalon. There is a better than average chance that I have, at one time or another, made fun of women (and men) wearing inappropriate footwear or clothing during these activities. (Seriously, hiking in dollar store flip flops?)

And yet there I was, one martini glass shy of looking like an extra in Absolutely Fabulous: The Movie, picking my way around tree roots, trying not to slide down the steep declines and shuffling across the sandy sandbar.

I had become that girl.

My mantra became “Don't slip, don't sweat, don't swear out loud.” Because the only thing worse than being that girl, is being that whiny girl.

The good news is no ankles were turned, no shoes were ruined, no bodies needed to be hidden. No one wound up wearing an orange jumpsuit.

Although if I do wind up in an orange jumpsuit some day, I have the perfect pair of strappy wedges to wear with it.

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