Sunday, April 22, 2012

Junking Can Be That Way

Yesterday I made the rounds to all my favorite junking sweet spots. I started out at the Savers in north central Austin but didn't find a single thing. Junking can be that way; one must be patient.

Next I headed to The Blue Hanger, referred by me as "The Digs." I've never seen a blue hanger, nor any hanger colored or otherwise, anywhere in the store...ever! They don't use them. You've literally got to dig through the mounds and piles of random junk, hence...The Digs. This place is only for the truly dedicated junkers. It's messy, crazy, totally chaotic, and oh so much fun! Giant blue table tubs are wheeled onto the warehouse floor while hopelessly optimistic shoppers are held back giving us plenty of time to speculate what that odd lump in bin #6 could possibly be. Upon the go-ahead nod of the guard, shoppers race down the row in a mad dash. The digging begins! Through garden hoses, purses, kitchen wares, books, toys, records, golf clubs, rackets, trophies, and all the assorted discards of ordinary households heaped into tangled piles of junk we search. Junking can be that way; one must be hopeful.

Is it really worth it? I've asked myself countless times, and inevitably my answer is, "Yes. Yes it is!" I've uncovered incredible items here - vintage typewriters, suitcases, books, golf clubs, and more. And this is what draws me back. The eventual promise of TREASURE! Junking can be that way; one must be diligent.

After sifting through the rows of giant blue bins, I ended up purchasing a set of chess pieces, some assorted Scrabble tiles, Boggle letter cubes (which came with two nickles), dice, and some piano sheet music. OK, so not the stellar finds of my dreams, but clearly a bargain for about $3.00. I'll find a use for each and every one of my finds. I'll incorporate them in my crafts, use them for display, or re-purpose them in some useful fashion. Junking can be that way; one must be creative.

Next I headed toward south central Austin to Thrift Land, one of my favorite stores. It's clean, well-organized, and the items are reasonably priced. Today it would prove to be a honey hole. Within 20 yards, just around the first corner, I spotted a vintage handbag. The second turn - a vintage turquoise thermos and a wire, multiple-pants hanger. The third side - 2 runner sleds! I chose the larger of the two. I'd hit my stride.

After rounding the final corner I found a small gray-blue vintage suitcase. It was at the final stretch just beyond the check-out line...THE FIND! the holy grail of my junk obsession, the big-one that would not get away... A Schylling metal Speedster Fire Truck screamed for my attention! My heart raced. I answered the call. Junking can be that way; one must be alert.

I'd had the perfect junker's day. And with that I was done. There would be no more junk stops. I was thankful and satisfied with my finds. Junking can be that way; one must be gracious.

If you're new to junking - hang in there. You will be rewarded. You must be patient, diligent, forever hopeful, always alert, and ever thankful for what you find. Your junk obsession is out there. It's waiting for you. Roll up your sleeves, get your gloves on, and go find it!

All photos by Paulette Rodriguez

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