I would love to have a quirky little store. I think I really would. There's a few things that keep me from opening a quirky little store. I have no business skills or knowledge and I have no money with which to open a store. And, I really think those are valid reasons not to have one.
But, if I had one I would want it to have French flea market finds, because I love France and I love flea markets. Put the two together = extra special.
Also, I would want it to have lots of handmade, re-purposed items like the ones my cousins make. Gorgeous stuff! Quirky, chippy, usable, well-worn = LOVE IT!
And folk art. I'm crazy about folk art. Stick me some place full of folk art and I start drooling. Like Yard Dog or House of Blues.
I wouldn't want to have a store just to have a store. The drive behind my store would be to fight slavery and to support the organizations that have homes for the people rescued from the horrors of slavery. Those rescued need huge amounts of support to get on their feet and be safe from getting drug back into slavery. The brave souls providing this physical and emotional support need support.
The store's purpose would be to support organizations that have real, practical, smart programs to end extreme poverty and slavery. So it would be stocked with fair trade items like coffee, chocolate, clothing, jewelry, art, etc...
But, like I said, I don't have the skills or money to make my quirky little store a reality. So, what I can do is tell you about some of the organizations my quirky little store would support.
International Justice Mission
Free The Slaves
Trade As One
Not For Sale
Abolish Slavery Coalition
Kay Warren said in a piece for start> that she used to be a nice person, but she didn't feel nice now that she knew of the horrors of AIDS sufferers. She became "seriously disturbed" by their pain. She couldn't be quiet. And I knew exactly what she was talking about.
That's how I feel about slavery. I come across as fanatical at times. I can't stop talking about it. It hangs on me. It hurts my heart. Sometimes people think I'm joking about my passion for fair trade coffee, chocolate, sugar and clothing. Nope, I'm not. I'm serious as a heart attack. I don't want to knowingly participate in the slave industry or abuse those in extreme poverty. When I ask where those t-shirts are manufactured and if they are legit, I'm dead serious.
So, if it seems I spend a lot of time talking about slavery or it seems like I'm staring at you extra hard when I'm discussing it with you, that's because I am.
Wow, that got serious.