Unusual Compliments

August 6th, 2014

Being the lone white skinned, blonde haired person in a city of nearly a million, I’m used to the comments, criticisms and compliments that I get. There’s the usual, “Oh, how beautiful, your skin is so white!” and “Is your hair real?” and curious kids who ask “Why’s your nose so big?” or “Why do you have two eyelids?” and the old ladies who poke my belly and pinch my arm flab to get across the point that I could stand to lose some weight.

But today I was at the store and hear a new one. As I was heading back from the cashier to pick up my things from the counter, I overheard two clerks talking about my “socks.” Apparently the one gal is looking for socks that have open toes so she can wear them with sandals. And mine fit the bill. Unfortunately, they’re probably not in her price or comfort range.

They’re compression socks to keep my vericose veins from getting worse. They are neither comfortable (so darn hot in the summer!) nor cheap ($16 a pop on Amazon, if you’re in the market for a pair). But these 40-something women thought they were the coolest thing and asked me all about them.

While I feel self-consious wearing them, and make sure to wear long skirts to ensure the tops of the socks remain hidden, Santiago doesn’t seem to think it’d be a problem to wear them outside with shorts. Case in point: The other day he noticed that I’d cut a pair of workout pants into shorts and wanted to know why. They had holes and the bottoms were frayed.  Plus I wanted another pair of shorts for around the house. I didn’t bother to hem them becuase it’s a knit material and they’re just for around the house. He said they looked okay and that I could wear them outside. Uh, no!

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    About Charlotte

    I'm a wife, mom and freelance writer in small town China. My two kids and I are three of the dozen foreigners that live here, though we've yet to meet them.

    We're near enough to Beijing to visit occasionally, but far enough away to make it a bit of a hassle since we don't have a car.