A couple of weeks ago, I completed the mammoth count of all my tea towels, in preparation for the opening of the Tea Towel Museum. 802 tea towels, counted, logged, catalogued, duplicates weaned out. Having exhausted myself, I went on holiday for a rest. The packing of the caravan is a simple task. There is a limited amount of storage space; there is a place for everything and everything has its place. That’s why I like a caravan holiday; everything so easy. If there is an empty cupboard then you know you have forgotten something. I always take two tea towels on holiday; I hate to have to use wet tea towels, so taking two allows one to dry while I use the other.
With 802 tea towels, how could I have forgotten to take a tea towel away with me? I have to think that I had been so submerged in tea towels, for so many weeks, that I just forgot. Liz thought it was a deliberate act of defiance, making sure I had a genuine excuse to buy another tea towel. Cheek of it, it was a deliberate mistake. Well, now I would have to buy a tea towel, as a matter of urgency, not just for pleasure. The first day of my holiday was in Aberdeen. I decided to go to my favourite shop, NOVA, the source of my Aberdeen and The Broons tea towels. They always have a wide choice of tea towels. I didn’t want to buy just any old tea towel; this was going to be part of my collection. I discussed this with the woman behind the counter (who was still recovering from the shock of knowing that I aleready had 802 tea towels). She said that her favourite one was the Designer Guild Chinoiserie Peony tea towel. I had seen this one on many occasions, liked it, but could never think of a reason to buy it. Now I had a reason and acted on the recommendation of the woman who sold it. A great buy. Number 803. Thank you Nova!
A few days after this happened, I read in the paper that there is a real danger that NOVA might close unless the owner, for the last 50 years, can find a buyer. I cannot bear to think that this shop, iconic in my eyes, will close. Where will I buy my tea towels in future in Aberdeen or those unusual gifts that you need to buy for events like birthdays or birthday/good luck/moving house etc cards. It’s the sort of shop that I always want to wander around, even if I don’t need a tea towel. I hope they find a buyer!