One of us is a shopaholic. I’ll give you a hint: it’s not me. I’ve probably bought more things for the terriers in the last year than I’ve bought for myself. But Andy is a shopper of frighteningly professional dimensions. He’s all about the clothes and there is no place better for clothes shopping than London. You do the Math. It was a given that one morning would be spent in a virtual Marathon of shopping. I could have ducked out and gone to another museum. But watching something done at this level of perfection is a sight not to be missed. So I tagged along. I figured, if I got bored, I could always do a quick survey of London’s inventory of terrier-themed items. I’ve picked this bone with London before. I do find it shocking that the land that gave us the entire category of terriers has such a paucity of terrier-themed items. (In a historical footnote: terriers were unknown until the Romans invaded and Pliny the Elder wrote back in marvel of the dogs that “went to ground”. He graciously named them after the Latin word for earth, terra.) So a-shopping we did go.
Meanwhile, I kept an eye out for terriers. I thought I’d finally find my items when we nipped into Farlows which is the sporting shop where Prince Charles gets his flyfishing and hunting gear. Maybe, it’s because they don’t seem to stock gear for fox hunting that Farlows scored a big zero for terrier items. There were ties and sweaters with pheasants and grouse and Labrador motifs, but no terriers.
As we traced our way back through the Arcades, I was ready to declare it another poor showing for London in the matter of terrier gear. Then, pay dirt! An art gallery with a revolving slideshow of their wares featuring at least six terrier paintings. Alas, it was closed and the glaring sun allowed no angle for a good picture.
I knew I wouldn’t want to know how much these cost, but I did ask. Basically, for that price, I could buy a herd of real terriers and give each one a mink pillow and chew toys stuffed with hundred dollar bills.
So what did I buy, given that the terrier themed items were out of reach? I’ve told you that I’m not really into clothes shopping. So how about a nice little bottle of Eau de Toilette? Yes, a bottle of scent is a very English thing to buy. But it moves to a whole different level when you shop at Penhaligon’s, which is England’s premier perfumery (by Appointment to the Queen and the Prince of Wales.)
Call it a foolish purchase. But at least I didn’t buy Sartorial, their latest signature cologne. It’s billed as “The Scent of Saville Row”. So it presumably makes you smell like money or high-limit credit cards. I’d rather smell like a Martini and keep everyone smiling.
And think of all the money I saved by NOT buying solid silver terriers!
Well of course there were no terrier-related items in the Savile Row/Jermyn Street area, you won’t find the Terrierman shopping there. He will get his kit from Scats and Mole Valley in the market towns.
Ha! Good point. But for fox hunting gentlemen, there has been a long tradition of terrier breeding — although they probably had an employed terrierman to do it.
Good on you Andrew. Bespoke indeed. Loved those Union Jack shoes and the white “winkle pickers” behind them. Enjoy your shopping.
You mean your terriers DON’T have mink pillows already…? I love shopping vicariously with you and Andy. This is such fun seeing London through the eyes of two people who really know the city well. The silver terrors ARE lovely, but I think the gin-flavored scent really is more you. What a fun day!
Love the London pieces. Today though, I thought of you and your mother on safari since it is Mother’s Day. Made me smile.