Contemporary Women

Handbags were Chia's thing, she never let one go unnoticed. Some folks make eye contact first, others take note of the shoes, but for her the handbag got the first appraisal. She always said that from the make, age and style she knew rather more about the owner than they'd like her to. It was that which made her so good at the market, always nailing the sale. She said the right thing to the right women, all them feeling the tug of a fake kindred spirit before handing over the cash.


A designer handbag dangled from her skinny arm, perfect cerise stitching over the finest creamy hued italian leather. The cotton trims matched both the thread and the exact shade the lipstick she wore, her mouth resting in a natural pout. A moment later her new manicure was searching its contents, the lips now drawn into a pensive scowl under increasingly arched eyebrows.


Kara surmised at first glance that the new girl was in borrowed clothes. Everything designer, nothing fitting quite right and a handbag that belonged in a thrift store bargain bin. Apparently she was friend enough to borrow the rags, but not the bag that went with it. Or possibly she held some misplaced attachment to the battered leather bag that hung limply over her shoulder. Either way the girl didn't belong in the north end of town. Kara inwardly smirked, this could be a fun night out after all.


Mrs Turner's handbag was a trash can with a strap. Every wrapper and receipt was jammed into it along with broken lipsticks and lidless pens. With the thick black leather strap over her shoulder her right arm would bulge outward just the same as if she were carrying a fresh baked loaf of bread. From deep within the straining sides always came a faint rattle, as if she never travelled without pills of some kind, and the whole thing had an odour reminiscent of tapioca pudding.