When I left the States, I had planned to have some of my things shipped – but I was trying to keep it to a minimum.  I was excited about the prospect of literally cleaning house and getting rid of things for my big move.  I am bit embarrassed to admit this now, but on some level, I felt a tad superior to those poor hoarders and packrats.  I remember thinking that I don’t need material things. Now that I am getting more and more settled here, boy do I miss those material things.

I can’t really explain the amount of stress that went into packing my life; whittled down from a one-bedroom condo to items I could fit on a plane.  It was months of clearing out, giving away, and selling to just three, large suitcases.  These bags were terribly heavy as I had tried to be as ‘nomadic’ as possible.  To this day, I still don’t know how I did it.  What I do remember is that I didn’t pack my boots thinking it too hot to wear them when I arrived in China and I can always have them shipped.  Big mistake.

I miss my boots.  This may seem silly, but I just love them. I have these great, old caramel colored boots that I got from Banana Republic about 100 years ago and have had resoled about three times.  Anyone who has known me for any length of time has seen me in those boots. When I put them on, I feel as if they were made for me. I also have a beautiful pair chocolate brown riding boots as well as some newly acquired black boots that I got for a song.

When I went to the shipping place here in Shekou, I found out that it would take at least two months to get my shipment.  Two months. On top of that, I would have to surrender my passport for about a week.  I just don’t like the idea of my passport being out there like that.  Also, there are some people here still waiting for their things to arrive and they had their things shipped in July.   I decided to just wait until next summer to get my stuff because it just didn’t seem worth it.  However, I miss my boots.

This afternoon, my friend Michelle asked me to go shopping right after school.  To be honest, I didn’t really need an excuse to leave work – I was ready for the weekend.  So, we headed down to Coastal City and there amongst the pushy salesman was a sale on boots.  Beautiful leather riding boots.  I grabbed a black pair and then tan ones.  I got them both for roughly $100 US.  I feel whole again. Today, I love China.


  1. Claire, this post was awesome and it made me miss you so much! I can’t believe how often I’ve seen you in those caramel brown boots…especially when we’d go out dancing! Thanks for sharing your great experiences with us and I’m sooo glad you got yourself some cool new boots! Enjoy and take good care of yourself!
    Love you! Terri

  2. Debi Mauricio

    Claire, I did the same thing when we moved to Boston. A year later when we moved back home to a house EMPTY and needing furniture and accessories, I longed for my things also. They are a comfort. My rooms and walls are STILL not finished (one does not realize how expensive it is to replace the inside of an entire house). It’s only been 8 years!

    I’ve been reading up on China and find myself going to newspaper articles about China because of you. All your fault. Our pod is not the same without you. Miss you, miss you, miss you.

  3. I’m so glad you got some boots! Good for you, Claire!

  4. andrea lora (andy)

    hi ms w,i miss you so much and when can u come and visit us i really miss you. andrea

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