Queen of Spades

6 months pregnant though hardly showing under my petite sized RAD Red winter coat, begrudgingly I walked down my favourite street in possibly the world if not the city.

Hormones racing, I’d feel weird when F won’t slow down for London. Both of us experience London in different ways. He breezes through it, slowing down only when he gets somewhere. Goes to his favourite bookshops for hours and hours at end but flits from one place to another and over and over again to the same places he holds so dear.

I walk through streets old and new, at a snail’s pace. Drinking every single drop of surroundings like a cherished wine. So yes, begrudgingly because who races through Regent Street?

I told him to get a bus to Waterstones at Piccadilly Circus and I’ll walk over. “Are you sure?” He looked nervous. “Will you be able to walk so much?” “I’ll be fine” I said. “Just go!”

Shrugging his shoulders he got on to the bus, glass doors sliding close behind him. Just in time.

I walked along Paul, thinking of that box full of food didn’t make me comfortable. Not really hungry.

Moleskine, fleeting glance over the merchandise, mentally calculating inventory and matching colours. Which of these do I have already and what’s new.

Went inside Hamleys. I wanted to see everything. What kids call toys nowadays. All different ages. I was about to need the info on the kiddle race soon. I know nothing. An educational tour across different floors, each dedicated to a different age for children, cringing inside at the gender divide, I left a bag heavy. Some toys for the tiny I don’t know yet.

Kept on walking, just kept walking. People, kids skipping along, the cool, perpetually wet air. So London. I strolled past those gorgeous buildings standing around for centuries.

Kate Spade.

Black and white stripes whipped across my brain space.

I’m not one for designer wear though I don’t mind them either. I own pieces from roadside as well as designer made exclusives. Don’t really find any distinction between them. I’ll buy it if I like it. But Kate Spade, New York. There I stood in the heart of Britain, the Simple typology on the Glass window with the tiny spade on top of the Queen’s name.

I don’t own a Kate Spade. I realised. “But what will I buy?” I’m not a handbags-y person. Nor am I too fond of clothes. Felt pulled. I’m having a baby girl. I need to be more girls-y. So she can have a choice between liking stereotypical girlie stuff, or be like me. I at least want her to have a choice, I argued in my mind. “For her” I muttered to myself, marching in with a purpose in my head and a spring in my step. Clothes, no, bags, no, Accessories hmmm.

Wallet. That’s it! I’ll get a wallet. Browsing around my eyes took to this one almost immediately. Smooth, patent leathersy, in beautiful Rose Gold lending the single fold wallet a delicate aura, this was me. So me. Kate Spade or not, I need this. The gorgeous, sleek zip dangling down the pocket behind it. It took my heart away at first sight. That is when I saw the phone covers. “Would you have one for an iPhone 7 Plus?” I asked, only to be presented with four. Quickly I shortlisted two. One a very bright and colourful, the other clear but with displaced gold polka dots. Gold it is, I said to myself. Chhoti can buy all the links in the world. I’m buying designer in her love. What I buy should be mine. Always been very clear about the distinction between being a mother and a sacrificial goat. I love my child to bits, fast forward to today. However we are still separate individuals and unless I value myself, I can’t show her how to value life she holds within. She must. I got here after toils I want her to skip, ideally. This at least should just be part of her genetic code.

The packaging held me hostage! The gorgeous box. F convinced me later to throw the phone case box but I held on to the wallet one. Bright pink with pillowy soft tissue inside lovingly hugging the Rose Gold Wallet with the cute zip.

Happily I sauntered Off, back on the street. Kate Spade. A person. She lives in New York. I thought. Though what a success that she has her store in the heart of London proudly sporting New York on its face. Such a cool idea to include the name of your city in your branding.

In the midst of everything baby, I loved my only treat.

Sunday, we lost her. To the demons within that overpowered her beautiful self. We will talk about her for a while, people will write. Those who knew her or know more about her than a Rose Gold Wallet and an iPhone Case that my daughter loves to chew. Though for me, it spelled relief, it spelled happiness, it spelled celebrating the individual in that moment. I might not own much of her work though I love everything she stood for.

Holding on to a piece of what I have left. Glad I even have this.

Rest in Eternal Peace, Kate Spade. New York will miss you but I promise other places will too.

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