Nassau Straw Market

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nothing makes me hapoy like an artisanal market. It's all about the hunt for me. You know, digging through racks and piles and scouring and scouting. Those of you who are into the hunt probably felt a little mini shock of adrenaline just thinking about it. 

The hunt is real at the Nassau Straw Market in Nassau, Bahamas. 

On a weekend cruise to celebrate my grandmother's 80th birthday (Happy Birthday Aya!) we stopped at Nassau on our last day. We'd all drank too much the night before and really got our money's worth from the all-you-can-drink bracelets and had been up until the piano bar closed the night before singing lots of The Who and Billy Joel. Nassau was hot and we didn't plan for an "on-shore excursion" (see David Foster Wallace's "A Supposedly Fun Thing I'll Never Do Again" for my thought on cruises), so we walked into Nassau's little cruise economy right off the port. Rows and rows of things you can buy to remind you of The Bahamas - sea salt scrubs, tea, tie-dye t-shirts, pipes and lots and lots of straw. 

I zeroed in on a classic straw bag ($15) and for just one extra dollar they added my name right then and there. I wish I'd taken an extra second to think of something funny to have them write, #missedopportunity, but my name will have to do. Turns out, the bag is the perfect size for toting around my laptop, so I've been using it every day since I got back. I'll probably have to retire it in "the fall," you know, that fake thing that happens everywhere else around October that has to do with leaves or something. But while it's still summer, the straw bag has made it into my everyday rotation. 

I've had major buyer's remorse since I left the straw market. I wish I'd bought some of t he tiny clutches with little flowers woven in. I should have bought another tote or two for some friends because they make the perfect summer birthday gift. I should have just stocked up on a few because they were cheap and cute and I'm worried mine is going to break, not because it isn't quality, but because I'm beating it up fast by using it every single day. Efforts to find the vendors online have been fruitless. I can't justify a trip back to Nassau, even when the weather is nicer, just to buy more straw bags, so I'll have to find another reason to visit again. With an on-shore excursion planned and not on a cruise. 

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