By Monday, not knowing when or if my missing suitcase would arrive, it was time to go shopping. We went to Arkadia, which is the Mall of America of Poland. I dread malls in general and have carefully avoided the M of A, but this was desperation.
On the plus side, European clothes tend to fit me better than American clothes do. On the minus side, the sizing information appears to be utterly random and meaningless, and it was a challenge to find a salesperson who spoke English or who had a sense do how American sizes correspond to European ones. I tried on pants that were a bit too long, others a bit too short. It was not going well at all.
We finally wandered into a cavernous store filled with designer stuff. Europeans appear to be inordinately fond of designer logos, while I am not.
We were turned over to a young woman who spoke a fair amount of English, who proceeded to study my body with great care, giving my butt particular attention. "You are perfect 46! You wait here." I did not correct her by noting that I am 65 and terribly flawed.
She triumphantly handed me a pair of pants that fit like a coat of paint. Never has my rear end been so sag-free. Likewise with the shirt she handed me. She made me try it on just so she could gloat.
In theory I could demand reimbursement from the airline or my travel insurance now that my suitcase caught up with me, but it would feel wrong. After all, I have nice new threads I would never have purchased otherwise, and I got to meet the only woman in the world who knows my body better than I do, plus we got to buy some wonderful Polish pretzels on our way out.
One more purchase to mention, a bottle of Zubrowka Biala, the vodka we became fond of last time we were here. Each bottle contains a blade of grass from a bison farm (what the Poles do with bison I do not know). The bison pee on the grass and the grass flavors the vodka. It was banned in the US the same year that absinthe was. There is now a US legal version, but without the grass and tarted up with vanilla and sugar--nasty stuff. Our first few guests when we get home can sample the real taste of Poland. If they ask nicely, I will put on my duds.