We realized how very localized we’ve become living in Cork when, on our American holiday, we took to the outlet mall. Our Irish friends made it clear that shopping is a big draw for visitors to the United States. We made a list of shops at Hagerstown Outlets and Leesburg Outlets then opted to go to just one. The drive was enjoyable because we were mindful to leave after rush-hour traffic had dissipated and somehow we got lucky driving back because even at 6pm and going the speed limit, we got from Hagerstown to Northern Virginia in one hour flat! It might seem like a trivial thing to you, but for me it is the stuff road trip legends are made of.
For those who want outlet shopping but need something else to occupy their husbands, the Antietam battlefield is close by, offering a historic perspective of the pivotal 1862 battle in the American Civil War.
In case you are wondering what stores drew us in…
Adidas, Nike, and Reebok for trainers, socks, and running gear
Banana Republic for denim, tee-shirts, sweatshirts, and sweaters
Columbia for coats, comfortable knit skirts, and good walking socks
Hanes for bras and underwear (three for $45)
Ralph Lauren POLO for pullover sweaters
Gap and J.Crew for chinos and cotton boxers, if the price is right
Bath & Body Works for moisturizers
L.L.Bean for raincoats, lightweight cardigans, canvas totes, and zip-up hooded sweatshirts
Timberland for rugby shirts (three for $55)
Eddie Bauer and Bass for socks and sandals
Calvin Klein for shorts, pants, and button-down shirts
Ann Taylor for tops and skirts
Kate Spade just to see what $300 buys you these days (I still prefer Orla Keily or even Caprisa for Irish weather durability and style)
Though we spent a full day at the outlets, we kept to a budget due to luggage restrictions. For lunch, we feasted on Auntie Anne’s soft pretzels and pretzel dogs. “Mmm’s” and “Aah’s” aside, it couldn’t hold a candle to the chicken piccata my sister-in-law made for dinner that night. The women in our families are pretty good cooks, which makes for a delicious time when we get together in the kitchen.
No photos from today because my camera battery was spent, but am including a photo of the Vineyard Vines dress (if you love the fabric, the skirt is still available) I bought with my MIL on Friday. Daily photos resume on the 17th day of our DC holiday. To view an assortment of photos from the trip, visit my DC/Maryland set on Flickr.