It’s not about what you spend…

It’s about what you save!

A young man at a supermarket once gave my mum this advice and she relayed it to me.  I think it is awesome.  I must go on record though, as saying that I do agree with Mark in that you shouldn’t just buy things because they are on special, but if you really want something, are planning on buying it and then it is 40% off! Well then it is time to celebrate.  Today has been a day where my debit card really got a work out… but none of these were impulse buys (well maybe the rain pants), and ALL were on sale.

This shopping tale begins two days ago when Mark and I attending a pre-trip meeting for our Algonquin canoeing adventure this weekend.  We are going here:

Map of Algonquin.

It is quite a way north of Hamilton and much colder.  We were told to not wear anything cotton and that it was imperative that we bring our rain gear.  Considering we packed all our clothes into a 23kg suitcase and come from Australia… Mark and I have none of this.  I mean seriously – almost all my clothes are cotton! Apparently you can’t wear cotton because it comes from a plant, doesn’t dry easily and when it gets wet or cold it keeps all the warmth for itself.  Ideally we want wool.  Well we don’t have any wool and wool is expensive, but some rain gear seemed kind of necessary. We got this information only 3 days before the trip, so straight after the meeting Mark and I noticed the outdoors shop right opposite the uni.  Shops in Canada are open until 9pm, so we went in after the meeting and looked for some waterproof jackets.  We didn’t find any, but we did find all last year’s ski gear at 40% off! Very long story short: I really need a new parka as I didn’t bring one from Australia and am ging skiing in Vail with my lovely mum and brother.  The aforementioned mum also said she would give me some money (quite a lot of money actually) to buy a new ski jacket for my 21st birthday.  So I have had my eyes open.  I really want a jacket that is warm.  Warmth is number one on my priority list.  I also needed a jacket that would go with my very out-there pants… and that is no easy find.  So I saw these jackets and was initially drawn to the purple colours (as I always am).   I discovered that there was a very snazzy jacket with “primaloft” technology insulation and it was a Helly Hansen.  Better yet it was 40% off $399! For those of you are are not quite sure what Helly Hansen is, basically it is the brand that a lot of ski instructors wear and has a reputation of being very good quality and WARM.  It is so soft and cuddly and so incredibly warm – I cannot wait to wear it!  I put it on hold for a few days before skyping with mum and finally deciding to get it.  The result:

So happy in my awesome new Helly Hansen jacket!

Mark also found an awesome Orage jacket in the shop.  After much convincing, he believed me that it was a good investment and for wearing here and skiing in Australia.  I mean, it is unlikely that a jacket that fits, is very snazzy and warm is going to be 40% off its already cheap Canadian price again in the near future! I will have to put up a photo of Mark in his new outerwear because well, he looks quite dashing.

Now, we still had the problem that we didn’t have rain gear, and our new ski jackets area little too warm and heavy to take on a trip where we have to carry everything in packs.  We decided to explore the nearby town of Dundas and check out Canadian Tire and Adventure Attic.  Canadian Tire was a bit basic (although the did sell ice-skates and hockey sticks) and so we headed to Adventure Attic.  Lucky for us all their rain gear was 20% off and we found some great stuff.  I have wanted a spray jacket for a while, so was happy to make the investment.  I got a really nice North Face green jacket.

Pretty steazin’ jacket, am I right?

 I love it! Mark also got a (slightly different) green North Face Jacket, so we kind of match.  The jackets are both so cool though that I think we will look more awesome than lame.  We were also told by our trip leader that we will be sitting with our legs exposed in canoes, and considering it is forecast to rain, our legs will get wet.  It is then supposed to get down to about 5 degrees at night, and we don’t have showers or anything so if you get cold and wet, you stay cold and wet. He then told us to get rain pants.  Well, I wasn’t going to but I did.  They are really comfortable and actually look pretty good.  I am sure I will get use out of them over here and back home.  While I was in the change rooms I could strangely sense my mum and grandma telling me to buy them… my shopping guardian angels I hope you were right!

I am going to be so dry in my canoe!

Anyway, I really need to pack now! We have to fit all of our gear into a canvas pack.  I feel like this is all very rushed but I am so excited! Next time you hear from me I will have photos and stories from Algonquin Park – the oldest Provincial Park in all of Canada – and these stories will come from someone who was kept very dry by her new rain gear.

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