Wednesday, October 28, 2009

The Color Purple

We'd only been in Vienna for a couple of hours when we stopped at one of the sidewalk cafes for a bite to eat.
We sat there, tucking into our Weiner schnitzel, watching the people stroll past us as we ate. I began to notice something. Many of the women who were walking down the narrow cobbled lane were wearing the color purple. For some, it was a scarf or a purse. There were T-shirts, shoes and one eye-catching purple raincoat tossed over the arm of an elegant woman.
I called everyone's attention to it. We commented each time someone walked by wearing the color.
Later, after dinner we strolled along the wide plaza near the Opera House, window shopping and getting the feel of the city. At almost every store I stopped to admire something purple on a mannequin or displayed on a rack.
The next day I pulled a deep violet colored pashmina - purchased in a little gallery in Whitefish, Montana - out of my luggage and looped it around my neck. I was a chameleon trying to take on the hue of my environment. I wanted to fit in.
I wore it the rest of the trip.
This morning, one of the coolest we've had, as I dressed to go out, I picked up that soft wool scarf, and wrapped it around me. Instantly, the sights and sounds of Vienna came back and I back on the cobblestone streets. And I was lost in a purple haze.

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