A Comfortable Chair

It is the end of the semester. While I have missed the spring blizzards at home, the weather is still cold and blustery. Everyone is getting a little short-tempered.

I decided I needed something to look forward to when the weather got warmer. I thought about spending time in the woods and I decided I would like a chair I could carry up into the mountains with me. While I realize that this is total luxury, I have come to feel that the comfort of my tired old behind is worth something. The question is, how much?

Camping equipment is a lot like lingerie; the smaller it is, the more you can expect to pay.

I started out by looking online and saw the enormous range of prices in camping chairs. I’ve been spending a lot of time sitting at my desk lately on a chair that I purchased online. It is not very comfortable and I find that portions of my rear end go numb if I don’t stand up on a regular basis. I have vowed that I will never buy another chair that I have not personally sat in and so, even though the weather is still chilly, I made a trip to the sporting goods store.

Just as I arrived, another woman of about my age appeared in the same part of the store on the very same mission. She told me she would be taking her chair kayaking, once it was warmer. I told her my chair was going hiking. We both started out looking at the very tiniest chair. It only had two legs. The other two legs would be provided by the person sitting in it. I tried it out, dubiously.

“There’s no way I could drink a glass of wine in that,” my new friend observed.

I considered this. I imagined it might pose a problem. Once in a seated position, the two-legged chair was surprisingly comfortable, but getting into a seated position required considerable gymnastics. I imagined trying to do this with a wine glass in my hand and I immediately saw her point.

“And after I’d had a glass of wine, I’d fall over backwards into the river. It would just be alcohol abuse!” she added and laughed. I agreed and we kept on shopping.

We sat in one chair after another. We assembled and disassembled the chairs to see how easily this could be done. We imagined the sunny days we would enjoy, sitting in our chairs: mine in the mountains, hers on a riverbank. We found two chairs we liked; one weighed less but didn’t have a price tag. We decided this was probably a bad sign. When we finally located a clerk, our suspicions were confirmed. The slightly lighter chair was twice the price of the chair that weighed ten ounces less. We each bought the less expensive chair— we carried out the last two cheerful orange-colored chairs in stock.

Outside the store, the wind was still cold. I still have a lot of papers to correct before the semester ends. But now I have a small, comfortable chair waiting for me. It is waiting to go into the mountains when the weather gets warmer (and it will). It is waiting for when I have time to read for fun again (and I will). My little chair is waiting for spring and it is ready to go.

“Enjoy your chair!” I told my new friend as she left.

“You too!” she called out.

The sun felt warmer already.

Till next time,
—Carrie

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